I have been seeing Pamela as a therapist for 5 years now.

On the day I first called her to set up an appointment, I was frustrated by the lack of nurturing I had been experiencing in my life and I rushed to blame everything and everyone around me for my shortcomings. Finally, that day I couldn’t cope. I couldn’t reconcile with how I felt. I rejected everyone who attempted to help me. I experienced a level of frustration, anger, and fragility, I would hopefully never find again.

When I talked to Pamela, I had no idea I was going to find the teacher I would one day thank for helping me become a paramedic.

B.O.A.R. was the first exercise I was taught by Pamela, and the one I utilize daily. She taught me to: Breathe and be present. Observe what I am experiencing. Allow my feelings. And Reset my being.

It can last any amount of time. From the moments of a few breaths, to the length of a movie, the exercise gives me clarity about how I feel and what my situation demands of me. As a Paramedic, I typically have the time of one deep breath to respond. In these serious situations, I have this one breath, one moment to BOAR. It’s become a habit I instinctually refer to in a second.

In those moments I remember to be myself. Myself, the person I always wanted to be.