When Your Children Save Your Life

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Sorry for the delay, sports fans, but I experienced a medical emergency recently that has kept me off the keyboard. All is well now, but I'm taking it just a little easier. Only last week I posted an article about how children can learn to change the world and the first thing I mentionned was:  teach them to be first aiders and lifeguards, that then they will learn to see their fellow humans as people for whom they can care and assist.

So it was more than a little rewarding when my young son found me in medical distress when he got home from school last Thursday and fired into action, contacting his Mom, who was on a school trip in Ottawa, to verify his procedures. He put in the accurate call to 911, contacted neighbours who could help, kept his mom informed, and basically saved my life.

Oh, I'll still be on his back about homework and cleaning up his room, and spending equal time on music and Minecraft and playing with his dog – that's my job. But something deep has changed. Fifty years of first aid and I've never actually saved a life. Oh, I 've assisted lots of people in need of bandaids, or assistance with allergic reactions, or splinting up breaks. But nothing this big.  I don't think he quite gets it yet, the significance, but I do.

Twelve years old, cool under pressure, and my hero.  I know there will never be a request for payback, like, "Hey, Dad, I saved your life, dude, how about the car keys." He knows how much I owe him. He also knows that I know that there is no charge for services rendered.

A lifesaver has honour – the reward is in a llfe continued, the satisfaction that all that training paid off, the affirmation that it works when you do it right.

This year he will go on to his Bronze Medalliion training, more First Aid and CPR, and I'll bet his attention to detail will be just a little more focused. He knows someone's life will be on the line one day and he may be the first responder.

I hope you get him. He is a lifesaver.


Skid Crease, Caledon

for William Gates-Crease