Be appreciative… this is something I have always been taught. All of us have been taught this in life. The Bible even speaks of it, don’t covet, don’t envy, etc. It seems like all we do though is NOT appreciate what we have or know. I am guilty of this myself. It seems like all the time somebody is saying something about how; I wish we had this or that, or the chief could have bought us something better. Those are just a couple of examples but I could list so many more. To beat it all too most of the complaining comes from the younger people who barely have any experience on the department but think they are 20 year veterans. You know the 2/20 firemen, 2 years on 20 years experience and still don’t know crap. That’s another story though. Anyway I need to get to the point.
For the past 7 years the area fire chief’s council has put on a training weekend and firefighters from all over the state come to participate. These guys and gals are from volunteer, career, and/or combination departments. It’s open to all. There are firefighters there that come from departments with the biggest budgets, newest nicest equipment, all the bells and whistles, what we all dream of. Then, there are the folks that come from departments that you wonder how they are even what they are. Of coarse there is the in between people too. The average jakes I guess.
As I sat in class this weekend and looked around me, listened to others talking, and processed what they were saying I realized just how lucky myself, my brother firefighters, and the departments I serve really are. We are blessed and fortunate to have the leaders, equipment, training, and support that we do have. We could be so much worse off. Until you realize how little some people have you don’t appreciate what you do have as much. Some of the stuff I was hearing blew my mind and I couldn't process how they got away with some of the things they were talking about, mind boggling to say the least.
During our scenario’s we had to do we were broken up into groups and got the opportunity to work with some of these firefighters from the less fortunate departments I am talking about. As we got deeper and deeper into these scenario’s I realized these guys really did have some good ideas. I think there is actually a lot of that out there. Maybe they just don’t have the support they need or someone that will listen to them. I also found an opportunity to pass on what little knowledge I have that they might be able to take back home or put in their toolbox and use later on. These guys are out here trying to accomplish the same thing as the rest of us and share the same common goal of trying to protect and save lives and property. They know how to appreciate what they have and make the best of it.
So my question is, no matter what you have or don’t have, know or don’t know, why is it so hard to appreciate it? I don’t have the answer, I wish I did. I can promise you this though… from now on my goal is to appreciate things more. I know it could always be worse. Around here we are blessed and most don’t even realize it. If you have the answer or have any ideas please pass them on to me. Also, if you get the chance, take the time to say THANK YOU to those that make it possible to have what you do have.
As always, BE SAFE!!!!!