As I’m sure you’ve noticed, I have pretty much said nil in regards to the earthquake in Haiti (or any other natural disaster that has occurred in the recent past). There are several reasons for this, number one is because quite frankly I don’t bother with the news and as a result wouldn’t be the most well informed person to speak about it. A close second is because everyone and their mom has covered the quake from EVERY possible angle imaginable, so what would the point be of me simply reiterating what everyone else has said a billion times before in the past month.
However, when I stumbled across this particular article in the MSN daily news (if you never noticed, 95% of the news stories I cover come from the MSN news…its about the only direct source of current issue coverage I ever bother with…and even then pretty irregularly) I felt compelled to share it. Not only because I think it’s absolutely incredible that this miracle happened, but because I think it highlights a pretty big issue of “when’s a good time to throw in the towel?”. Well, before I go on, check it out.
By CBC News, cbc.ca, Updated: February 9, 2010 10:15 AM
Haiti man pulled from rubble
A 28-year-old man was pulled from rubble in Port-au-Prince, Haiti on Monday, claiming to have been trapped there since the massive earthquake on Jan. 12, according to media reports.
Villagers were rummaging through the ruins of a marketplace when they found the man buried underneath.
He appeared dehydrated, malnourished and disoriented, and was taken for treatment at a University of Miami field hospital near the airport.
“He was emaciated,” Dr. Mike Connelly, of the university’s Project Medishare, told CNN. “He hadn’t had anything in quite some time. He had open wounds that were festering on both of his feet.”
Connelly could not explain to CNN how the man had managed to survive without food or water for so long.
The man’s family told BBC News that somebody had brought him water to drink during his 27-day ordeal, but doctors believe he may have been hallucinating.
Haiti’s government halted search-and-rescue efforts on Jan. 23, 11 days after the magnitude-7.0 earthquake, which killed an estimated 200,000 people.
cbc.ca (Copyright: (C) Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, http://www.cbc.ca/aboutcbc/discover/termsofuse.html#Rss)
To see video footage of this miracle survivor you can click here.
Amazing right? What an inspiration to know that this man who by all laws of nature and biology that we know of should have been long dead was able to overcome starvation and dehydration to be rescued! This reminds me of those stories where mother’s lift 20 ton trucks off of their kids. We as humans consistently limit ourselves when clearly, when we use nothing other than our will and our soul we are able to achieve the impossible. Seriously, I am actually inspired. Never again will I tell myself something is impossible because “the rules” say it is. And never again will I automatically lay boundaries on what I can achieve simply because it’s difficult/painful/wrenching/etc. and nobody else has been able to succeed at said thing.
But as I said, this also highlighted the question of: when is it OK to throw in the towel when it comes to life and death situations? I mean, at this point I wonder how many people who were hanging on desperately but who just were not as strong or blessed or whatever that this dude was and gave in right before being found? Although it’s unlikely, how many people lasted just as long, but because the rescue effort was abandoned weeks ago they were never given their chance at salvation? The problem is, since it is what it is and the rescue effort WAS abandoned (prematurely, in most people’s opinions) there is no real way of knowing. And Lord knows, we don’t want the situation to EVER recur so we can test the theory.
But, theoretically, would it have been reasonable for them to continue the rescue effort for 30 days? Well, if one guy last 30 days (which is pretty much a medical impossibility) why not 40? Or 50? I mean, realistically, what is the cut off? While I think everyone can agree that 11 days was CLEARLY waaaayyy too early, and before miracle dude most people would have agreed that 30 days could be erring on the side of overdoing it a bit, when would we have thought would be a reasonable time, I wonder. Of course, families who have missing family in Haiti would think 10 years wouldn’t be too much, which is understandable. But for those who are further removed, and therefore more objective, what would we think?
I guess I’m feeling all analytical and reflective not just because of miracle dude’s story, but rather because I am wondering what kind of fight, what kind of spirit I would have if I was in the exact same position (knock on wood). How long could I hold on, knowing the chance of rescue was slim to none. We hear stories of people all the time who beat the odds in a similar way, and all of them managed to find some inner strength that told them that they just WERE NOT going to die that day, in that way…and that was that. But maybe subconsciously those people all had some hope, some inherent faith that their loved ones would never give up looking for them, which gave them the will to keep living regardless of the obstacles.
I guess nobody ever knows how they will react in a life or death situation, and nobody truly will know what runs through their mind until they are in that situation and it happens. Realistically, all I can do is hope that I absolutely NEVER get into such a predicament, that if I do get into that kind of predicament that I have the balls to be strong and will myself to live regardless of how difficult, and that they don’t give up the search until my strong willed ass has been rescued.
Of course, being a Christian, I invariably analyze everything putting a faith/God/destiny twist on it. So maybe dude was in with the All Mighty One, and as a result he could have lived another 50 days, no sweat. Maybe it was his faith in God that kept his soul alive, perhaps even as his body began to die…and maybe as long as your soul is alive your body can never truly die, no matter what happens to it. Or perhaps it just wasn’t his time yet, so even if he had gotten shot point blank in the face he would have lived (amazingly, some people do).
So I guess I add to my thoughts that I hope that I never EVER am in a life or death situation (cause I’m a pansy like that…I prefer creature comforts…I don’t like being a little parched or a wee bit chilly..lol) , but if I ever was (knock on wood once again) I add to my original thoughts that I want the Big Man in Charge and me to be in like flynn (don’t know what that means exactly, but my Mom used to say it alot…not even sure if I’m using the saying properly, but I’m sure you catch my drift :-p), for destiny to have written me alive til I’m 300, or that my faith (for all I don’t practice my religion AT ALL I most definitely have FAITH in it…as ridiculous as that sounds) will be so full and all encompassing that between me, God, and my everlasting Soul I keep on breathing til I’m found.
And that is all. Wow, I have so many other things to say on this subject. I was most definitely inspired by this article. I hope that likewise you were as well.
God Bless Haiti in their time of need.