Although the situation still looks very grave, I’m heartened to hear that Bolton Wanderers footballer, Fabrice Muamba, is now in a ‘stable’ condition in hospital and breathing by himself, after collapsing on the pitch during the FA Cup match with Tottenham.
And apart from one particularly disgusting incident – where someone rushed to edit his Wikipedia page and put today’s date as his date of death (which was, to the site’s credit, quickly removed) – the outpouring of concern and radiance of positive energy from people all around the world reinforced the fact that us humans are actually pretty great when unite.
The hair on my arms (unfortunately, not on my head, since they’re mostly absent, there) stood up as I read through the well-wishes and tributes to Fabrice on Twitter.
Football is such a passionate sport, for the players and the followers of their beloved teams, and often it can seem so divisive that it appears there’s real hatred between the opposing clans… but something like this reminds us that there’s no division and that, in the end, it’s just a game; the hate is mock. It’s just part of the dramatics that makes football so enthralling.
Both the Bolton and Tottenham supporters were chanting Muamba’s name as he was stretchered off, after those traumatic scenes of him receiving frantic attention from the medics.
This was an FA Cup match – one of the greatest and most revered competitions in all of global football – so, before and during the game, both tension and passion was peaked, but all that energy of rivalry and wanting to beat the opposition quickly changed focus when they saw the horrific developments on the pitch.
I’m sure every single person that was in the stadium is in shock, now, but unified by the overwhelming will that Fabrice recovers, as do the rest of us, whoever we may be and wherever we may be in the world, whether we love football or not.
It leads to questions of the fragile nature of our mortality…
I mean, if a 23-year-old athlete – who, it goes without saying, has taken care of himself to reach that peak level of fitness and performance - can collapse and lie, literally, on the brink of death, then it should remind us that this mortal life is not forever.
We too often fear what’s to come in the days, weeks, months and years ahead, yet this is always at the expense of the contentment and happiness we could fill our living moment with.
Look around you, right now, and everything you may fear to lose in future is still here… so enjoy it… enjoy them… enjoy life, right now.
Face the changes when they come… don’t fear the changes and lose your ability to enjoy life right now.
And as a closing note, I would like to thank all the medical staff who treated Fabrice – and send the same sentiments to every paramedic, nurse, doctor and first-aider who has helped save the lives of countless other people in such situations.
If Superman came out of the sky and saved one person from dying, it would be global news…
If that live-saving comes from an air-ambulance, an off-duty nurse or some bystander who happens to be trained in first-aid, it’s just a couple of column inches in the newspaper, if that.