Sunday, September 1, 2013

When Your With Someone When A Heart Attack Happens: The Importance Of Being Prepared

Have you ever punched a person so hard in their chest that it felt like your hands grabbed their non-beating heart?

I did this week.

It is the 2nd time in my life that I was able to resuscitate someone by hitting them as hard as I possibly could with my two clenched fists clasped together and all of my strength and body weight coming down on the person who's heart has stopped beating. 

In itself, I can say there is nothing I have ever experienced that could come even remotely from explaining what it is like to exist in that nano-moment place that is between life and death . . . when you try frantically to create - to feel that thump ... thump .... thump of a heart beat. 

Nor can I explain how slow the world moves as your powerful hands strike a mighty blow down onto someone's chest.  The powerful force and inertia of your blow wrapping around a person's lifeless heart, energizing it back to life.

This past week one of my closest friends had a severe heart attack while we were together.  Fortunately, and with a lot of luck and quick-reaction know-how that included what felt like me putting my hand through his chest to get his heart beating again, my dear and cherished friend who once traveled into the storms of abduction with me when I was Chasing The Cyclone is going to be okay.

God willing, and with time, he will be the same caring, loving, and compassionate goof-ball that he has always been.  One thing I have learned in my near 2 decades of friendship and decade of being business partners together is that if anyone has the ability to have a full recovery, it is my dear friend.

And he better, for we sure do have a lot of work to do . . . not to mention several interesting golf courses around the world we have yet to play on that 'we need to'.

Before I go any further, I would like to tell my dear friend this simple message:

I love you. You have been true to me and our friendship for so long.  You have been teacher, guide, trouble-maker, warrior, partner, confidant, and most of all friend.  Our friendship has covered the globe many times over in our professional work and in what we do to protect children from abduction and kidnapping. And no matter what we faced, we faced so much of it together with a smile and, in your eyes, a sense that all would turn out the way it was suppose to.  So as I celebrate you my dear friend ... take the time to heal, but do so knowing that we have lots to do. In the meantime know I am going to have a delicious Portillo's Italian Steak Sandwich to celebrate you shortly.  By the way ... did I ever mention how funny you look sleeping wearing that funny little blue hospital robe? We'll as a reminder ... you look ridiculous! Nevertheless, I have seen you in even more ridiculous attire ... even though some of that was to do with bringing a child home ... which is always pretty amazing. Still - you look ridiculous and when we celebrate your birthday in October I intend to fully utilize the photos I have taken of you today snoring away like a big ol' lumberjack!
Now to all of my friends who may read this post, I would like to strongly urge each of you to do yourself and those you love a very big thing: make sure you take CPR and Heart Attack resuscitation classes. And even if your' too busy at least go online and watch some of the educational videos available.

This very well could be the difference between taking photos of someone you love as they cut wood in a deep, peaceful slumber that you will definitely use during that person's next birthday celebration, or, well, saying good-bye.

One final note to my pal: you know ... you really changed our plans for this week!  But I am delighted to know that I will complain to you soon enough about that. As for now ... I love you my dear friend.

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