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I sat down to polish my boots today.

I try to keep up on that so when I’m invited into a strangers home their first impression of me is clean, calming, and put together. It’s the least I can do to present myself in a professional manner & it got me thinking...thinking about how many homes these boots have walked through on the worst, or scariest days of that residence life.

It got me thinking about all the times I’ve walked calmly into the least calm of situations in homes, on highways, in the middle of nowhere. The times the “invitation” into that home was a frantic scream from a back bedroom or the basement. All the times these boots have rushed out of those homes with a loved one on the stretcher, calling “Do not try to follow us!” behind me. Or worse, the times I’ve stood in these boots, holding back my own tears and feelings, while explaining to a family why it’s too late. Why we can’t do anything more. Like these boots we can cover it up and polish ourselves up to look fresh, revived, unbothered...but like these boots the scars of what we have seen & been through are still there. There was a time when I would polish these boots and you’d think they were brand new, but now it shows through. Those tiny grooves you never noticed before are long, deep scars. That little scuff is now a tear in the thick leather...eventually we can’t cover it up anymore. Eventually, all those little things build into damage beyond repair...if we don’t address it, and just keep covering it up they keep building and building until the boot breaks. So I’ll polish my boots today, and hope nobody notices the scars underneath. JJ - 16527 @jdj.86

Joanna Jelencic is a Primary Care Paramedic with ten years as a First Responder.

Joanna Jalencic


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