There are many tributes and gestures of thanks to firefighters this time of year… and there should be. I can’t imagine fighting in the heat, breathing in the acrid air, charging into dangerous areas encumbered with heavy protective garb and hauling heavy equipment.

This year there are so many fires and not enough manpower. The task is enormous and the threat real.  We can’t thank firefighters enough for risking their lives to fight those fires.

We also offer thanks to those who must manage all these logistics… sending out crews, informing the public, making decisions about evacuations. Often a thankless job.

There are so many to thank, if you think of it.

First responders, search and rescue, ambulance crews all deserve our gratefulness. Being the first on tragic scenes takes a toll.

Hospital ER staff, Victims Assistance personnel, and support staff  all experience things we cannot imagine, seeing the rawness of life unfolding.  They respond to tragedy with professionalism and calm.  They are appreciated!

Working in a hospital, I often observe the challenges health providers face.  Vomit basins, bed pans and wound care are  just part of the job. What I am touched by is the sense of dignity a nurse can offer when a patient is most vulnerable. This takes inner strength and compassion.  Doctors make decisions we can’t even fathom, the responsibility that rests on them is great.  The body and mind is complex and we expect much of them, not often giving thanks.

A whole blog could be dedicated to social workers; their workloads often overwhelming and the needs are great.. I’d like to thank those who clean surgical equipment (did you ever think about that), and those who keep the hospital clean.

While we are mindful of those who risk their lives, there are many who work challenging jobs that benefit us all. 

After a plumbing disaster last month I find myself very thankful for plumbers. I can’t imagine that is a fun job, but I was so thankful for the help I received that day. Watching roofers working on our neighbours roof last week got me thinking about the risks they face, working on steep roofs in all kinds of weather. It makes me think of my own hubby often climbing ladders up high to paint houses, and I pray for his safety!  These are all professions we can take for granted, but when we need them it makes all the difference.

Have you ever been thankful for a dentist?  Given my love for visiting them, I can’t imagine choosing that profession. But when I get a toothache… a year ago I had a weird growth in my mouth that even perplexed the dentist. But his calm manner and gentle treatment put me at ease and he was able to resolve it.

And then there are undertakers. Have you ever thanked one?  Or a coroner?  They too are touched by tragedy and offer professionalism while caring for bodies that held life…

So thank you… to the helpers. Too many to mention. To those who face the unimaginable, to those who face danger, to those whose jobs might be mundane but keep us safe or healthy, or provide the things we take for granted.

As I sit here on this smoky day, gratitude is a good exercise. Grumbling is easy, gratitude changes our frame of mind.

So, thank you!

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