What It's Really Like Being A Death Investigator

What It's Really Like Being A Death Investigator

It’s the worst day of your life, and it’s my Tuesday.
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I meet people— a lot of people— on the worst day of their life. It’s the worst day of your life, and it’s my Tuesday. And my job is to get you through it.

OK, so technically my job is to investigate a death, but really, I’m there for you. I show up to work every day and deal with horrific things just on the off chance that someone tells me, “Thank you. You really helped me today.” I can’t describe the gratitude that accompanies a simple thank you from a grieving family member. I know you won't remember my name. Hell, you probably won't even remember the day. But if you remember that I made you calm; that I didn't break you into a thousand more pieces than you thought you'd ever fracture into, then I've done my job. I think anyone I work with would say the same. We wouldn't show up otherwise. When people say they don't know how I do this job, that's what I tell them. We do it for you.

My job is not glamorous. It’s not like CSI, and it’s not always “cool.” It’s heartbreaking. It’s dirty. It’s frustrating. Do I see some cool shit? Yeah, absolutely. And every time I see some cool shit, I have to pretend they didn't mean a thing to a single soul. If I remember they mattered to someone, then I lose my shit, and I'm no good to anyone.

I see everything from grandma with lung cancer to an unidentified with her throat slit. I see everything from the heroin addicts to the suicidal. I have seen natural deaths, accidental deaths, suicidal deaths, and homicidal deaths.

My whole world is reduced to the living and the dead…and honestly, the longer you live with the dead, the harder it is to return to the living.

I eat too much. I drink too much. I’ve built up walls I spend a lot of time reframing. Every time someone chips away at that wall; when one death hits me just the right way to knock a brick loose, I have to spend time repairing it. I have to put up that wall again, because if I don’t, I will lose my mind.

I will lose my mind because you lost your mom, or your brother, or your son. I can’t let this job get to me, or I can’t help you. So while I will be compassionate, patient, and understanding with you, I may also seem at other times dispassionate, impatient, and aloof.

I compartmentalize because I have to. We make jokes because we have to. Nine times out of ten, we're laughing. Few topics are off limits and even fewer jokes are. Like I said, I know it's the worst day of your life. The problem is, it's still not the worst day of mine. In fact, I'm probably in the middle of my week, stressed as all hell by the million other things waiting for me back at the office, and your dead loved one really put a kink in my plans for today. I say this out of necessity because this is how I survive waiting from day to day, doing this job.

I will not do this job forever. I always planned for it to have an expiration date. As it is, there's a 50/50 chance I know someone who knows someone. The other 50% of the time? I'm waiting for the ones I love most. My dad, my mom, the overdoses, the suicides, and the motor vehicle accidents. It's a constant game of, "What's the last name?"

I can't express to you how exhausting that is. It's picking up babies that should have lived another 80 years and men and women who flat out gave up. It's looking at men and women whose lives were ripped from them, whether it was through their own actions or not. It is seeing the worst of humanity, every single day, and coming back. It is seeing the worst thing someone can do to another human being, and taking those small moments of pure humanity and gratitude as payment.

We don't get paid enough for what we do. I can barely afford my life. I'm not the perfect employee, but I'm good with you. I have moments of doubt, but I wouldn't trade a single moment of my job for a second.

I'll admit I can't do this job forever, not without losing myself. I can feel my walls cracking slowly. I've only got a few more years of this left in me. Still, I know even then, I will continue to help people in my career. It's in my blood. But just know that I'll cherish every second of every interaction I've had. I pray for you all, and your loved ones, every night. Just know that. Long after you've forgotten me, I'll always remember you.

Cover Image Credit: Mary Smith

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To The Parent Who Chose Addiction

Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

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When I was younger I resented you, I hated every ounce of you, and I used to question why God would give me a parent like you. Not now. Now I see the beauty and the blessings behind having an addict for a parent. If you're reading this, it isn't meant to hurt you, but rather to thank you.

Thank you for choosing your addiction over me.

Throughout my life, you have always chosen the addiction over my programs, my swim meets or even a simple movie night. You joke about it now or act as if I never questioned if you would wake up the next morning from your pill and alcohol-induced sleep, but I thank you for this. I thank you because I gained a relationship with God. The amount of time I spent praying for you strengthened our relationship in ways I could never explain.

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Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

The amount of hurt and disappointment our family has gone through has brought us closer together. I have a relationship with Nanny and Pop that would never be as strong as it is today if you had been in the picture from day one. That in itself is a blessing.

Thank you for showing me how to love.

From your absence, I have learned how to love unconditionally. I want you to know that even though you weren't here, I love you most of all. No matter the amount of heartbreak, tears, and pain I've felt, you will always be my greatest love.

Thank you for making me strong.

Thank you for leaving and for showing me how to be independent. From you, I have learned that I do not need anyone else to prove to me that I am worthy of being loved. From you, I have learned that life is always hard, but you shouldn't give into the things that make you feel good for a short while, but should search for the real happiness in life.

Most of all, thank you for showing me how to turn my hurt into motivation.

I have learned that the cycle of addiction is not something that will continue into my life. You have hurt me more than anyone, but through that hurt, I have pushed myself to become the best version of myself.

Thank you for choosing the addiction over me because you've made me stronger, wiser, and loving than I ever could've been before.

Cover Image Credit: http://crashingintolove.tumblr.com/post/62246881826/pieffysessanta-tumblr-com

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13 Reasons Adam Doleac Should Be Your New Celebrity Crush

He's sure to be #1 on your Spotify playlist AND in your heart.

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If you like country music, (or even if you don't THINK you do) and you haven't heard of Adam Doleac yet, you need to look him up ASAP. With his music rapidly climbing the charts, Adam is set to be the next big country artist, but there's more to him than just some guy who can strum a couple chords.

1. Have you heard his music? Because it's like, REALLY good.

By combining good old country lyrics with modern meanings and his strong and gritty voice, Adam creates a soulful and epic ballad that is sure to quickly become your new favorite. With popular songs like Bigger Than Us, Whiskey's Fine, and Puzzle Of Us, he is rapidly gaining traction and credibility in the world of music artists.

2. He's also not too bad on the eyes. 

There's something about a man who can belt out a nice strong country song AND look good while doing it.

3. He's just a hard working guy from Mississippi.

Mom and Daddy's Money says it all.

4. He played baseball in college, so I mean, obviously.

Baseball boys win. All the time.

5. He's passionate about his music.

His songs are full of soul and meaning and you can tell how passionate he is when he sings. Hang on, I've gotta go check my heart rate.

6. Colton Underwood and Cassie Randolph are big fans, so I mean, you probably should be too. 

These icons obviously know good music when they hear it.

7. He's got a good variety of songs.

No matter what mood you're in, there's always a country bop for you, and there's a variety of places you can listen, too. One of his biggest supporters is Sirius XM, and in 2017 he was a featured artist on the Highway Finds Tour. He has also snagged a publishing deal with Sony/ATV, and has co-written songs for a wide range of major country artists like Darius Rucker and Kane Brown, just to name a few.

8. Speaking of his music, (which I'm assuming by now you've already listened to) doesn't it make you want to just jam out?

Picture this, you're riding backroads with your friends or your bae, windows down, wind blowing through your hair, Famous is turned up full volume, all is well in the world.

9. Did I already mention that he's hot?

Kate Dearman

Case. And. Point.

10. He's kicking off his tour in his hometown of Hattiesburg.

There's nothing like a guy who acknowledges his roots and loves his hometown.

11. He has a rescue dog. A RESCUE DOG.

A. RESCUE. DOG.

12. He's pretty much the sweetest guy ever. 

Literally, every other picture on his Instagram is of him and his girlfriend with a sweet caption about how great she is and how much he loves her. If that's not the sweetest thing ever, then I don't know what is. Guys who show off their girls always win, all the time. Period.

13. He's passionate and hard working, two things that are hard to come by in today's society. 

Through all the music, Adam has remained true to his belief that hard work is essential to success. His passion for music and his strong work ethic have been the driving factors behind his career.

Whether you're a seasoned country music fan, a newbie, or have never listened to country music before in your life, Adam's music is worth a listen because honestly it's so good, and before you know it you'll be jamming to all his new hits. Adam Doleac is sure to find his way into your fangirl heart.

Give his latest music a listen here.

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