Gratitude for our Silent Heroes

July 27, 2020
I have realized that true and authentic gratitude is not a one-off thing because someone did something nice for you. Gratitude is a way of life, a way of being that opens the doors to a whole new realm. A new perspective of reality.
As I began to live from a space of deep, genuine gratitude - a space within myself that I just couldn't access before this experience - I felt drawn to share my appreciation for all those that helped me the day of my accident. 
My gratitude mission started with Central Saanich Police. That day, the police were on-site within minutes, deep in the trenches, assessing my situation. Relief immediately set in because I was not alone. I wanted someone to be there with me - to stay by my side - as I silently and repeatedly negotiated with the Universe. The police officer not only stayed, but showed empathy and kindness. He compassionately reassured me that no one else was involved in the accident. He was patient as he continuously repeated this to me until I could finally process the information and believe it. This final acceptance is what allowed me to take a deep breath, relax and further surrender into what was happening.
From there, I tracked down the witness. His quick response in pulling over and calling in the emergency response team was an act of kindness I will never forget. When I “saw” him run to me in the ditch, I was standing, completely disoriented inside my car, which was the wrong way up. I remember hearing his calm voice as he approached my vertical window shield reassuring me that help was already on the way. At this point I remember thinking to myself “wow, the young version of Ekhart Tolle is here to help me!” I later met with David- he is lovely and amazing- and he looks nothing like Ekhart! I felt humbled and honored that he had taken the time to stop and care about what was happening to me.
Next, I searched for the Central Saanich Firefighters that showed up that day. I thought it would be one or two, but it turns out there was a whole team for me. I particularly remember the ones in the ditch with me - chatting away to them while I was lying, fetal position, in my car. I instantly had full trust in them. “My” team worked diligently and efficiently with the utmost kindness to extricate me safely from the sunroof of my car. I had no idea that firefighters show up to do the heavy rescue work with motor vehicle incidents here in Canada!
I want to acknowledge, here, that both the police and the firefighters went beyond their duty of service that day. As I gathered up my belongings upon being discharged from the hospital, I noticed that my handbag was stuffed full of all my random personal belongings from the car. You see, the police and the firefighters swept my car for all the items I may need. They saved me the hassle of trying to track them down at the tow lot. I found that my brand new sandals had been placed in my handbag and I was thankful that I didn’t have to leave the hospital barefoot. It was these seemingly small acts of kindness from the first responders that went a long way in how I was able to process the experience from start to finish. 
Side Note - "My" team of firefighters and police received official letters of commendation from myself and Central Saanich Mayor, Ryan Windsor, for showing compassion to a citizen and going beyond their call of duty as first responders.
I later thanked the ER staff at Victoria General Hospital. I particularly remembered the male nurse because he had a delightfully sarcastic sense of humour and an empathic female nurse. When I arrived in ER, they immediately informed me they were going to have to cut my top off. When I unconsciously spoke out loud my embarrassingly shallow and awkward thought “but I like my top. Any chance we can save it today?!” They both laughed, the male nurse taking an appropriately sarcastic tone while reminding me of where I was and what had happened. The other nurse compassionately and non judgementally smiling at me and my ridiculousness. Bless them both, they indulged my request and managed to get my top off over my neck brace. My top hangs as a reminder in my closet!
In search of the last piece of this particular gratitude puzzle, I set about tracking down the paramedic that rode with me in the ambulance to the hospital. He was calm, caring, and compassionate. I remember happily chatting away with him. A couple of times my body went into shock, shaking uncontrollably. He was there by my side, reassuring me. During our conversation, I intuitively recognized that there were three key facts I would need to remember about him. When I was later told it would be impossible to track him down, I chuckled (don't tell me anything is impossible 👊🏼). Fuelled with determination, I pursued every avenue I could think of to find “my” paramedic. After a few weeks of getting nowhere, I felt like I had only one option left. I told the Universe “OK, this is it. No more messing around. Today is the day I find him.” Moments later, I was sitting outside one of the ambulance stations in Victoria, speaking to a supervisor. I shared my story and the three key details I intuitively remembered about the paramedic. This was enough. Within an hour he helped me discover who it was and I was able to reach out and share my appreciation to another hero that day.
Silent Heroes
As I continue on this mission of living a life of gratitude, I see that the true heroes are the silent ones. These members of the police, the fire departments, the paramedics - not even looking for recognition, appreciation or gratitude. They are selflessly serving our communities, stepping up in unimaginable ways that most of us feel incapable of. Making sacrifices (their families making sacrifices) so that we can be safe. As I thanked each of these individuals from the depths of my heart, I realized that this is something they are not used to. Often, as first responders, they don’t know how a person’s story continues. I wanted to share my story with them so they could also see the unseen miracles. I wanted them to know that what could’ve been a debilitatingly traumatic event turned out to be the opposite for me. I wanted them to realize how much light they shared with me that day. A light that I invite them to trust and tap into, especially in those moments when they are forced to face the darker aspects of their jobs.
My background and training in meditation allowed me to instantly shift this into a loving and life changing experience. However, I needed these heroes to know that it was the way they showed up that day, which made this transformation possible. Each moment, each person in perfect alignment for the potential that was presenting itself. It was their contribution and co-creation that allowed me to rebirth myself into a new perception of life. I told these amazing men that they were actually my midwives that day in the ditch. I couldn’t imagine any other team that I would want to be by my side!
My gratitude for the Central Saanich Police, the Central Saanich Fire Department, the witness, the paramedics and the ER staff at Victoria General Hospital is eternal. Like I said, gratitude is a lifelong choice and I choose to appreciate these silent heroes every single day. Each of them holds a special place in my heart.
Thank you to these local heroes for being a significant and beautiful piece of my epic story.

50% Complete

Two Step

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.