John Marsden Writing Topic #460

Describe a time when you’ve helped someone**

One experience that sticks with me is my second year of uni when I helped one of my then-roommates get to the hospital.

I remember getting up early on Saturday morning to do my laundry as the washing machines and dryers at the student accommodation where I lived at the time would constantly be taken. Saturday morning was a good time to do laundry as everyone would be too busy resting from partying or just sleeping in. As I was coming out of the lift in my building with my laundry basket, I saw one of my other roommates, Annaliese rushing around the hallway and back into the unit, she told me that Amber needed an ambulance. Annaliese was rushing around the hallway looking for at least one of the two Residential Advisors (RAs) assigned to our building, she couldn’t find them and they turned out not to be around at the time. When I walked back into the unit, I saw Amber doubled over on the bathroom floor.

I immediately grabbed my mobile phone and called 000, this experience was actually the very first time I had to call for an ambulance and I found it very surreal. The person on the other end of the phone would ask me questions that I then asked Amber. After a few minutes, the person on the other end of the phone told me an ambulance would be arriving and that they would have to be directed to our building. I told Annaliese to go to the reception building, wait for the ambulance and direct them to our building, while we waited, I sat with Amber. Amber told me that she was suppose to work and she had her mobile phone in her hand, I took her phone, called her work and told them about the situation.

After Amber was taken away by the ambulance, Annaliese & I agreed that we should still report it and reported it to the RA on duty. When another roommate of ours, Tori, arrived home we told her what happened and she drove us to the hospital to see Amber and find out what was going on. After initially thinking she had appendicitis, it turned out she had kidney stones.

This experience was the first emergency situation I was in, in my entire life. It was a combination of both scary and surreal. Although it was horrible, I was proud of myself for staying calm and taking charge of the situation.


**Reference: Marsden, J 1998, Everything I Know About Writing, Pan Macmillan, Australia.

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