HAPPY NEW YEAR 2023!
I guess the title of this entry is true! As I entered our website to write it, I saw that our last entry was in June of 2022. And that is when I began seeing an increase in my symptoms of my then, "mystery malady," which I had been suffering with for over 20 months! In August, I found an endocrinologist who finally was able to provide me with a diagnosis and treatment. While I am beginning to see some relief, each day is like the mythical character, Forrest Gump said in the movie of the same name, "Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you are going to get until you take open it up," or something similar. For me, I don't know if the day will be a good one or a lousy one until an hour or two after getting up in the morning. However thankfully, I am slowly recuperating and realize that it will take time to fully recover from those nearly two years of the unknown!
As I was writing this blog entry, I realized how apropos this title is for the fire service. Whether you're a career or volunteer, there are days when the day just draws on...no calls, chores are done, a practice drill is completed and that's it! Then, we have those days where we wish we had just two minutes to "take a load off!" The tones are dropping within minutes of each return to the station. Then "poof!" The shift is over and you're headed home.
While we often complain about the lack of runs, many do not think about what he/she can accomplish when all the chores and drills are finished. Here are a couple of suggestions:
1. Reading - No, not the latest novel or even a presidential biography. Read to keep your fire service education growing and up-to-date. While there are the local, regional and national conferences, you can always set your own "bar" to a level where you are hungry to learn more about our job. Learn about the craft, then learn how to put what you learned to use.
2. Create your own group. See if a couple of your colleagues would like to learn or practice a new tactic, a new tool, or a new evolution.
3. Seek out the senior firefighter in your department, shift, platoon, etc. Ask him or her to share some of his/her experiences with you. However, this shouldn't be simply, "story time!" This should be a learning moment!
Although it is postulated that time is a human construct, it is very important to us and our lives. And like most of what is important to us, we cherish it. We should feel the very same about time. It should not be wasted. For, unlike the mythical Harry Potter, we cannot turn back time. Be sure to make your time fulfilling and helpful to you.
Founder & President of 5-Alarm Task Force Corp. and Creator & Host of the "5-Alarm Task Force" podcast.