A few year prior to my cancer diagnosis, I was the press officer for a cave/cliff/high-angle rescue squad. I was accustomed to media asking questions about the cave environment, patient status, events leading to a rescue, and number of volunteers involved in a rescue. After one rescue, a fairly new reporter asked a question that caught me off guard. The reporter asked “which tool was the most important?” I don’t recall what my answer was years ago, but I know how I would answer the question if asked today.
Almost all of the items in the bag I use for rescue help me get to the patient, but only glow sticks increase the odds the patient and I will get out of the cave alive. Most knowledgeable cavers will not enter a cave without three sources of light – a miner’s light, a backup headlight, and a glow stick in case both other light sources fail. Most members of the rescue team carry at least five sources of light, since we may be in a cave for hours or days.
I chose to share this story, not because I wanted to talk about my past, but because I wanted to talk about our future. There is a possibility you may require compensation tools for a significant time. What is the most important tool in your recovery program, and why is the tool so valuable?