Being Grateful and wanting that for others

This post is about being grateful….and wanting that for others. (However, I must make a VERY clear disclaimer here… the thoughts in this, and most likely a couple of follow-up posts, are MY thoughts, and NOT the official position or my employer)

Due to the many hats I have worn across my life I have the absolute pleasure and privilege of working alongside, with, for and on behalf amazing people like Firefighters, Ambos, Police, Doctors, Nurses, Allied Health and literally every associated profession, including cleaners, porters, administrative people etc that make a positive and ongoing contribution to the lives of people EVERY day. They all do it with out expectation of anything … simply because they are great people doing important stuff on behalf of others.

Today, I was celebrating a fellow firefighters birthday. A few drinks and feed. Then this beautiful women (no not my wife … on the left of the picture, but the one on the right in the red vest) wandered in. It is incredibly hard to explain just how much Maggie means to me and my family. This blog… really starts with the post how did I get here, and Maggie is a big part of that story. Running into Maggie today has resulted in a big chunk of reflection, and the shedding of a few tears, as I have thought about that day, the following years and the challenging experiences that came with them.

I will never get over the strength and tenacity that my wife showed on the day of Samuel’s accident. I will forever be grateful for that strength and tenacity, and her presence of mind in making an additional Triple Zero phone call and asking for a response of Firefighters as well as the Ambulance.  I will forever be grateful for our neighbours that assisted with the initial CPR and  for my fellow firefighters from 98 Stn who arrived on scene as the first emergency responders. I will for ever be grateful for Maggie, who was the first Ambulance officer to get to Samuel, to scoop him up and start our interaction with the NSW Health System. I will also be for ever grateful for the hundreds of people who then interacted with my family to care for and support Samuel and the rest of my family.

Twelve years ago, due to the strength and tenacity of my wife’s presence of mind to make an extra Triple Zero phone call, my family had access to a crew of Firefighters who trained in Basic Life Support and Advance Resuscitation, who had a truck with equipment on in it that could assist in an immediately life threatening condition like Samuel’s non-fatal drowning experience, AND they were the first ones on scene to begin providing support to Samuel and my family.

While I have written this… I’ve also been actively reflecting on just how far I should take this post…. I think on reflection that I am not going to go as far as my first thoughts… but I will leave it here, with a disclosure and a couple of questions. While I ponder how to further address the associated issues in an ethical and proper way.

Disclosure: Within my professional role I have been responsible for working on a proposed dual response model that would potentially see Firefighters responding with Ambulances to Out of Hospital Cardiac Arrest calls.

The Questions: 

  • Why because of the presence of mind of my wife, and my association with a fire service, did MY family have access to a crew of firefighters and equipment that could save a life
  • Why twelve years later, does the public that I and my fellow firefighters serve NOT have the privilege of access to the same level of service
  • How many people could be walking around, or be having a reasonable quality of life, as opposed to being dead, if they had the same access to services as my family?

I know, there are HUNDREDS of questions that people can, and will ask about my families circumstances and the difference regarding availability of services.  I know, that there are hundreds of statements and arguments about “whose job is it really”, and what the REAL problem is about responding in a timely manner to medical emergencies in the community. I know there are questions about pay, about processes, about support for firefighters etc…. I know that there are hundreds of questions about the chances of people surviving, questions about increased exposure of firefighters to trauma, and about quality of life and length of survival for those who need help….   I may address these in follow-up posts… but I need to do more thinking first.

This question though, that is over-riding in my head is this……

“if it was you… or your loved one, wouldn’t you want the nearest, fastest and suitably equipped and trained response to give you or your loved one the best possible chance of survival?”

Interests

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Business interests,
Banks interests,
Retail interests,
Industry interests,
Mining interests,
Economic interests,
Governments interests,
Department interests,
Companies interests.
but who is governing for yours or my bloody interests?

Always ask in whose interest?
But, to do so YOU must be interested,
Sure, be disaffected, disappointed,
hold them in disdain, or wish they were all arrested,
but you cannot afford disinterest.

Open your eyes, your ears, your heart and your mind,
look beyond the impress of main stream press,
you might just find that there is plenty of interest,
in whose interests
are being served, by those who proclaim an interest
in your interests,
while making interest
out of your disinterest.

Show your distress, make a noise,
write an email, a letter or post,
stand up, hit the street, protest.
Never lose sight, of yours, your mates,
your neighbours, your communities interests.

Think,take time, give time, help redress,
the imbalance of interests.
Deciding who will govern best,
before you cast your vote, put it through this test.
Whose interests,
will they serve best?

Then take your vote, and invest
in those that will serve the whole of your communities interests,
not just the narrow power or profit interests
of those who previously made their interest
out of your disinterest.

Be interested in interests!

The ABC’s of terror entitlement

terrorism

Alert,
But, not overly
Concerned by the
Designed to induce distress
Evangelism of a
Fear mongering
Government who,
Hope to
Influence
Juvenile voter sentiment with
Knowledge that fear and terror
Leverage base instincts, while praying
Main stream media make,
No news reporting or notice of their
Oppressive, overbearing, anti-social
Policies and that no-one
Questions, queries or
Resists
Surrendering freedoms or privacy to allegedly prevent
Terrorism. Or …….,
Union organisation, or the work of groups who
Value the lives of the disadvantaged, disabled or
Workers or refugees over the
Xenophobic
Yearning for more power and/or profit of the elites who would rather you
Zone out, be silent, compliant and subsidise their sense of entitlement.

copyright Mick Morris 2014

Having put these thoughts into poetry… I should make it clear that I fully appreciate that there are people with the means, motive and method who would do harm to us and are plotting ways to do so. I also appreciate that there is excellent work being done by our intelligence, law enforcement and emergency services to prevent, prepare for and respond to any incidents. I simply despise the process being made a political plaything.

Missing my little man

 

IMG_6972-1.JPGMissing my little man.

Just a clock and the ticking of my brain,
slowly passing time, thoughts falling like cascading rain.
My cheeks covered with salty stains,
of tears, that wash away the pain
of your absence, yet still you remain.

In my dreams and in my thoughts,
I vividly recall all the things you fought,
The joy, the happiness that you brought,
The lessons that your struggles taught.

I relive the moments between your breaths,
They were a fathers’ hardest test,
Even though I knew you could not stay,
That it was to be your final day.

One final rise of your small chest,
And it was all over, you and your heart at rest,
as I held your hand and stroked your hair,
accepting you were no longer there.

The days, one by one they pass,
The months, they seem so fast.
But not a moment can go past
Without you carried forever in my heart

Day or night, no matter where I am,
one thing is certain, I’m missing my little man.

The slow boat to China – or cruising through 20 years of Marriage

Mick and Jo

Who are these young people… Me and my beautiful wife back in 1993

Twenty Years

The second of October 1993 to the second of October 2013…A time to celebrate twenty years of being married. Twenty years that feels like it has been a long time, but twenty years that also feels like it has gone by in the blink of an eye.

Twenty years that have been filled with highs, lows and everything in-between. Twenty years that have given us three beautiful children, that have filled us with joy.. and the inevitable sadness of Samuel’s situation.

Twenty years with Jo-ann who is probably expecting me to make a crack about the possibility of being paroled for murder (twice over) by now…[or as a friend put it more politely the other day.. day years married to you Michael, I’m sure she thinks about murder and being paroled every day] …. but no… I’m more romantic than that 🙂 (shhhh stop laughing Jo-ann)

Taking the slow boat to china…

I’m sure you have all heard the term “on a slow boat to China”.. in general use it means something that takes a long time is very slow and may never reach it’s destination. The term also has a few cultural references to romance too with a 1948 hit song by Frank Loesser that has been revised from time to time by the likes of Peggy Lee and Bing Crosby, Bette Midler, Ella Fitzgerald, Dean Martin and many others.

In the romantic sense the term is about wanting to spend as much time as possible with the one that one love…..  and the reality is that I’d be happy to do twenty years with Jo-ann all over again.. and I look forward to spending the next twenty on another ride on the “slow boat to china”… because who really knows that the destination of life is, or when we’ll get there?

But….I’m also playing on words a little…..

The symbolism of twenty years

A twentieth wedding anniversary is represented by China….no not the country! Gifts of fine china are the traditional gift associated with a twentieth wedding anniversary.

It is meant to symbolizes the beautiful, elegant, and delicate nature of your love for one another over 20 years (However, there was no way I was going out to get Jo-ann a nice china dinner set…)

Jo-ann is one who likes symbolism and some of the associated tradition and the romance that it represents … so my gift to Jo-ann for our twentieth wedding anniversary  is this…

Doulton Forever

A Royal Doulton, Fine China Figurine called FOREVER.

I think it is a nice blend of the tradition of China as a twentieth anniversary gift, a reminder of our wedding day (and how damn young we looked!), and that we are on the slow boat to China forever…..

My anniversary message to Jo-ann.

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I Love You… through thick and thin, through the highs and lows. I’m glad you’ve shared the last twenty years with me, I look forward to sharing another twenty with you….[and just so you don’t think I’m getting too mushy… just remember… you’re stuck with me 🙂 ]