Today I had an appointment with my therapist who has assured me that I am actually a normal young widow. She was one as well which is part of why I like her so much-she GETS it. It always makes me feel better to hear her tell me that I am still on track no matter how insane I feel.
On my way there and on my way home, I saw an ambulance. Every time I see or hear an ambulance approaching, I tense up. I can't help but wonder "is that the one?" If it is a Clark County Fire and Rescue ambulance, I feel myself breathe a sigh of relief because that can't be it. If it is an AMR ambulance though, I find myself trying to get a peek at the paramedics. Is that them? They were so nice to me that night. I hope I thanked them for that. I know they gave me their names and a number to call if I wanted the full report, but I don't know what happened to it and I know all I need-and want-to know. James had a heart attack, veered across two lanes of traffic, hit two cars and never regained consciousness. The other drivers were not injured. That is all I need to know. Knowing anything more will not change the outcome.
The ambulances I saw today were both AMR ambulances. Everything from that night is such a blur I don't know if I would even recognize the paramedics. One was a dark haired female-I think her name was Brandy; the other was male. That's all I remember about him. Brandy sticks in my head because that was James' favorite karoake song. He was coming home so chances are the ambulance was dispatched from Portland because if it was dispatched from SW Washington Medical Center, it would have been going the wrong way on the bridge. It would have had to cross the bridge and then come back. I was told they were there quickly; traffic was still backed up from an earlier accident so they had to be coming from Portland, not Vancouver. Coming from Vancouver would have taken twice as long. This is what I tell myself to try to relieve the tension when I see an ambulance here in Vancouver. In Portland, I am just left to wonder. So far, I don't think I have seen the same paramedics; I don't know how I would react if I did.
When James died, my aunt said to me that when I see an ambulance, that's James. When I see a car like his, that's James. That is how she keeps my cousin alive. I had a hard time with that, and still do, but on emotional days like today, I try to embrace a feeling of his presence rather than focus on the unknown.