I am very happy to be able to offer our lovely readers a blog post from Rich Fabend, who's words have been very much missed over this time. As always, Rich is offering some of the most amazing stories and has shared them with our avid readers. I really enjoyed his piece below, it seems perfect for the time of the year and is really quite an amazing read! Please enjoy!
Before sending this blog to DisCo I went to Wikipedia and looked up holidays in Australia. I was quite surprised to find out there was no holiday similar to Thanksgiving which is celebrated in the United States as well as Canada. In the States Thanksgiving is celebrated on the third Thursday in November while in Canada it's celebrated on October 12. This could just be a lack of knowledge on my part and I think what I've written here can be appreciated by anyone without it having to be a special day.
Before Halloween my wife informed me that stores were already beginning to display Christmas items. We have yet to celebrate Thanksgiving and the majority of the advertisements on television are related to Christmas. I believe retailers are rushing us to Christmas to increase their chances to make a profit. I feel very strongly that the Thanksgiving holiday gives us an opportunity to realise how fortunate we really are. I tell people from the minute I had struck the bottom underwater I am one of the luckiest people in the world.
Travis Roy has said "There are times in our lives when we choose our challenges and other times when challenges simply choose us. It is what we do in the face of those challenges that defines who we are, and more importantly, who we can and will become." Years ago a psychiatrist asked me to identify as many positive things, as I could, that resulted from my accident. After a great deal of thought the only thing I could come up with was that I had met some wonderful people. As I think about the question today I realised that there are many things that I really do have to be thankful for. I have been given a second chance at life. (I had no pulse when I was brought on the beach). Marge, my wife of 46 years, and family have stood by me every step of the way. Everyday Marge goes out of her way to help me enjoy quality of life. My nurses are always willing to go the extra mile. I have many friends who give their time to help me do the activities I love. I have surprisingly good health. I have learned more about human nature and the power that exists within the human mind. I have wonderful memories that I am able to revisit. I have been able to continue being an educator and, I hope, help others to deal with the challenges they face. The kindness that is in others has become very evident to me. When we watch the news we often are led to believe that there is much evil in society in general but I know that is not true. Finally, even though I am in a chair I have much freedom and opportunity. So, don’t allow yourself to be rushed to Christmas without stopping to realise what you have to be thankful for.