Resources - Testimonials
Celebrating International Firefighters' Day - A Story of One Firefighter's Journey in Recovery from Trauma
May 4, 2021
As a firefighter/paramedic serving the community I live in provides no greater gratification. To be the “one” in time of need is what drove me. But 8 years into my career little did I know that I was the one needing to make the call for help. It took One, one call to service that I thought was just like every other. What I didn’t know that morning I drove into work, was that my life and the life of the person I responded to would be forever changed. In the many days, weeks, months following things quickly began to change. Shopping at the grocery store became difficult, sounds had never seemed so loud, being a father was an impossible task, the anger just came so easy, staying home by myself became the only answer. I felt as if the only cure to be found was at the bottom of a beer can. I was smart enough to know that all of this was not normal but dumb enough to think asking for help was a sign of weakness. I started every morning with immense fear of the day to come, it was as if i was walking along the edge of a cliff in pure darkness, wondering when it was I was going to fall in. It wasn’t until I was introduced to FRSN and their West Coast Post-Trauma Retreat did I even think I had a chance at tomorrow. To say that attending as a client changed my life is an understatement, it absolutely saved my life. I began to live, laugh, and love again. I found purpose for living. I found a community of first responders who all struggled like I did, and for the first time I didn’t feel alone. The continued support has shown me that I will never be alone again, that help is a phone call away.
First Responders respond to calls for service over and over again, but what happens when they are the ones needing help. When logical thinking is overcome by fear, isolation, guilt, depression, and suicidal thoughts. FRSN is the responders responder, the life line that says here take my hand, follow me, and lets heal together.
Without this program I would not be typing this today.
A special thank you to “all” that contribute to this very successful program. I am in awe of your approach and dedication. You have changed many lives and for that we are truly thankful.
I am so grateful. I can't begin to thank you for helping me like you did. I was drowning but was too proud and stubborn to admit it. You gave me life again. It is a work in progress but at least I can breathe. I will cherish the huge gift.
Former client to his therapist: "If you ever happen to run across another broken first responder refer them to WCPR in California. It was life changing. You did more for me with that referral than 20+ years of therapy."
I use to feel that because of my symptoms I was a freak in a side show. It is good to know I am just a face in the crowd.
I'd love to fill you in on life thus far, let's just say...... Amazing!!!!!! WCPR has saved my marriage, life, relationships and most importantly my family. If you could do me one favor and pass on that I think of WCPR everyday and I think of those times in the rubber room, and I smile every time.
I'm doing a lot better and I owe everything to you and your group. I was in a very dark pit with no way out, but after the retreat I was able to locate the path out.
…my life has always been about taking care of everyone else. …SOS allowed me to look forward, take care of myself and focus on me for once.
As hard as it was coming in here on Sunday, it is even harder leaving on Friday. But it is time to practice what I learned.
Before coming here I was living in a house full of circus mirrors. My life was so distorted. Thanks for giving me a normal mirror and allowing me to see my true self again.
Before I came here and my therapist was trying to convince me to attend she told me, "it is a place where miracles happen to guys like you." At the time that comment pissed me off. But, thanks for the miracle.
I feel this program not only saved my life but also my sanity. I thought I was the only one who felt like I did and I was wrong.
I wanted to call and say thank you. There is life after the badge. You guys made a difference in my life. Thanks.
If those people hadn’t been there for me, I honestly don’t know what would have happened. I don’t think I would be here to talk about it.
It has been 3 years since I went through WCPR and in reflecting I am so grateful for all the help and support I received. WCPR saved my marriage, my career and me...I've found myself again. So, Thank You.
It seems like saying "thank you" isn't enough, so i will make you a promise. I will choose to live.