Hi!
I feel a little embarassed to be on this site since I'm not in the Fire Dep. nor am I a rescue professional but don't stop reading yet...
I'm here because I can't think of a better place to ask for advice!

5 years ago I was the victim of an assault. The first guys to show up where the Firefighters...
When I was a little girl, when anyone would ask me what I wanted to be when I grow up, I would answer: "Firefighter!".
Today, I'm divorced, I raise my son on my own, but I had to keep a job I hate in order to pay the bills...

I'm a single mom of a 7 y old little boy, I live in Miami, and have worked my butt off my whole life, and I want to be a firefighter. I know...I'm far from being the only one..
It's not the job "security" I want, but more the service provided, the possibility of being helpful and even saving a life, being there when there's a need...

The issue is: What is it with people telling me that "You CAN'T do it! It's TOO HARD!" ??? I figured it all by myself, thank you..but why can't I? I mean, yes, I gotta start running again, I gotta have to stop smoking, I want to live a healthier life. I gotta go back to school at night so I can keep my job, take care of my son, but I'm driven.

I haven't looked into the exact "path" to follow yet, in order to acquire as much as I can before I take the test. I was pretty sure I wanted to do this, before I heard so many discouraging things about my not being "strong" enough (I mean physically) to become what I always wanted to be: A firefighter. Being a single parent gives me strenght and motivation to do anyhting I can do show my kid how life should be lived. Do your best, no matter what and nothing should get in your way as long as it feels right but yet...I'm lacking confidence now...

Among you guys, there's single parents I'm sure, and I want to be out there and start changing my life in a positive way! But by starting this I'm afraid I won't be able to be there for him.

What would be YOUR insight on this? should I do it? How long is it going to take me (more or less)? Is it selfish of me to want to "help out" others and not spend as much time with my kid?

Thank you for doing what you do...

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You can do it!!!!!
woa-woa....ok...question:" is this open?-by this I mean, I haven't started to train yet, I'm not qualified in any way yet! I just started asking around! Gotta go back to running and working out and start studying!". Can I apply??? Or should I wait to get my EMT?"
I am a single mother of two with a day job I spend about 50 hours a week at. I agree that you should probably start at a volunteer dept. ( I did). And as a woman that's been right where you are... I am incredibly proud of you for finally trying to realize your dream of helping others.
My bad. Just checked out the offer online, I DO NEED to be prepared and I am NOT. lol!
However, I was wondering if I could apply anyhow and participate to the test to see what I need to work on...Anyone recommends this or it's an absolute NO-NO if I'm about 99% sure about failing!?

Finally, anyone living/working as a FF in miami around? or should I directly go to the Firestation and ask for help? :)

You guys are THE BEST!
OK, Guys dont throw me out of the club....but even today women are not well taken in the fire service. And there are people out there that feel it is no place for a woman. The years of the "Boys Club" are over and everyone needs to know that. In the same respect, you need to be able to do the job as well as anyone else. There can be noone that does not pull his/her weight. I have seen the department trophy before they bring you drinks and stand around looking good for all to see while the guys talk about her behind her back. I've also seen the lonly person looking for the uniformed guy and what better place and way to find him is within. I am not saying that is you but that is what you have to fight. You must proove yourself every time you put on gear. Its not fair but its thatway. If you want it GO GET IT. Do not let anyone tell you you can't, find out for yourself if you can.
U can do it. going for ur paramedics right away may not be such a good idea tho. As a Advanced EMT for 2 years i would tell u to get ur EMT cert first, get some experiance and ur feet on the ground. Most Paramedic schools will require u to be EMT cert and atleast 6 months of experiance before applying. I love being a EMT there is no better feeling than waking up and doing my job. For the people that said u couldn't do it prove them wrong. Getting ur EMT cert is difficult long hours and online classes but u can do it. As a EMT u will be able to do Basic Life Support precedures, CPR, AED, Non-visualized airway Ect. Then if ur state has a Advanced Program then i would recomend taking it. In the Advanced program u will learn to administer IV's and start some fluids, U will also be intraduced in to cardiac monitering and paddel shock. instead of using a AED u will be able to paddel shock. I love EMS and all the same we are all a big team. without each other we wouldnt be hal of what we are. So dont let anyone tell u cant do it. we always need more team mates....
I'm a fifth grade teacher and I tell my kids never let anyone stop you from accomplishing your dreams. I say go for it and make the best of it. If you have that type of motivation to help, don't pass it up. I always wanted to be a fire chief when I was younger and there were a couple of times in the past four years, I thought it would never happen. Finally, after all the hard work in the past 16 years, I was elected as chief at the beginning of the year. I love the fire service even more. I am so proud of my brothers and we are a damn good department. But it was all because they supported me. So take our support and run with it!
here in NC any body with a GED or a high school diploma can be a fire fighter. don't let dumb lazy people tell you that you can do something. work hard and get what you want.
Want to wish you the best of luck You can do it. You seem to really to become a firefighter so go for it.
You have to do what is right for you, your son will understand. Most departments work schedules are great when you have kids, 24hrs on 48hrs off. As long as he is taken care of during that 24 hours you should be fine. I actually spend more time with my daughter now then I did working the 9 to 5. As far as the physical part. When I decided to become an civilian firefighter for the military I had to attend the Department of Defense Fire Academy in San Angelo TX. I had been in Fire/EMS for about 6 years before that and had the option of going through the entire course or just attending the ARFF portion, I decided to go through the entire course. When I got there, I was in a class with a bunch of 18 year olds who had just graduated from bootcamp. Needless to say I felt out of shape and old compared to these kids. But I had something a lot of them did not... Heart. And in the end it showed, I out performed 95% of them in all of the physical stuff and all of them in academics. If you want it bad enough, you will find the strength to do it.
Oh boy someone said the worst word the one I call a four letter, CANT. I have been told I CANT most of my life. You know all this time it has made me stronger, both as a person, father, husband, friend, and firefighter. I feel that if you put your mind to somethen, then do it dont let someone else tell you that you cant. My Grandmother allways said " CANT, CANT do nothen." Shes right as most already have said go for it if it is what you want, then dont let anyone stop ya. I am the lightest person on our Dept. I am only around 153 or so, so yes some things are going to be tough. There are things I am not able to do, so nothen wrong with tryen if find that need help with the task get someone to help. So dont let your self down on the idea that your not strong enough, you will be amasied at what you can do when you put your mind to it. I wish you the best and hope you make Chief someday, with the determination you seem to have based on what I read you just may. With that take care be safe in all you do.
i am on a dept with quite a few ladies on it...and when it comes down to it, ill chose a woman over half the guys on my dept any day for my back-up person.. my fire class had quite a f ew women in it.. and those gals were the best.. they busted their butts to get the job done... they put in more effort then the guys did..

NO MATTER WHAT. never let anyone tell you that you cant do it.. especially when you know deep down inside that you can.. go for it!
I got your back also and will be more then happy to back you up on a line inside or have you as my back up person on a line..

KEEP YOUR CHIN UP AND DONT LET THE BASTARDS GET YOU DOWN!

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