Monday, September 14, 2015 4:00 PM

A Breath of Fresh Air

For many living in the Valley this season, the impact of local fires coupled with hot days has certainly taken a toll in many areas, including making it difficult to breathe. The air has been rather awful. So many living in the fire prone and ravaged areas are especially being challenged with evacuations, fire personnel are fighting valiantly, and it is certainly a tremendous struggle.

So today, what a welcomed reprieve. The precipitation is long overdue, much more is needed, and I hope and pray for more deluge (with no lightening of course!). The breeze and lower temperatures are also a welcomed relief.

It's interesting how sometimes the most desperate situations are relieved by the unexpected; like today's rainfall. It causes me to reflect on a situation I was in as a front line caregiver many years ago.

A resident and her friend had driven "up the hill" to a location where the snow and freezing conditions had created a frozen pond area. They intentionally brought ice skates and proceeded to enjoy some time on the ice. In a very tragic moment, one of them fell through some cracked ice and were submerged for what seemed an eternity before rescue personnel arrived.

This story has a miraculous ending because the ambulance brought her to the local tertiary level hospital where a cardiovascular surgeon took a bold step to put her on the heart/lung machine, slowly warm her core temperature and she fully recovered. When she awoke and was able to speak, she said she was so thankful to be able to take "a breath of fresh air". Amazing.

I do hope the best for ongoing fire and smoke challenges and pray for a "full recovery". I also pause in the utmost respect and somber recognition of those who have suffered and gave their lives to combat it.