Freedom … Independence … Independence Day!!!

Contributed by Bob Rawlins, oxygen user and consultant to CAIRE Inc. ~ 

The start of summer in the US of A!!

As a kid, this always was the time of year when I thought summer began and the closer to going back to school started. 🙂

I don’t think you can watch the news, read a newspaper, think about the world, your own neighborhood, your family, your friends, and a day without touching on freedom and independence. Think about it?

And still, we can take it for granted. I don’t want to get political or too philosophical by any means in this piece but I do think it is important that we realize what freedoms we do have.

Of course, I’m talking about our health and the current journey we are on, no doubt, lol.

Well for the most part.

Ever since I have been on this journey of living with a chronic lung disease, for more than two years now, and I find myself living a bit differently. A good thing I propose.

FREEDOM, how do you think about it?

It’s part of an attitude. I would suggest freedom is a state of mind.

Yes, a state of mind.

What are you doing every day to help you feel that you still have some freedoms and independence on your journey?

Many doctors will say that with a strong mind you can battle most things including illnesses. It can prolong your life but more importantly, allow you to enjoy your life, and face adversity and struggles much better. Do you agree? Have you experienced this?

I can honestly say, YES.

It started while I was still in my eight week visit in the hospital.

Late at night, not much going on, except the normal noises of a hospital, mind you. Pretty dark, but quiet. My mind was not. So many things going through my head.

“Am I getting out of here soon?”

“Will I see my kids grow up?”

“Will my wife be ok if I’m not here?”

“What can I do to make sure they are okay?”

“What is the best way to approach this thing?”

Doctors didn’t know what this idiopathic lung disease was or how I got it, GREAT, right? I’m sure some of you can relate to that.

But not until I started thinking about survival, doing what I could do to strengthen my body and trusting in my faith, did my anxiety start to go away.

So, I started my path of trying to do the things that will help me recover and eventually get me out of the hospital and rehab facilities and get my “freedom” back.

“Baby steps” – I hate that phrase, but so true. This is a long process of mental thinking and physical buildup.

It will not happen overnight, nothing good does. Fortunes are not made, overnight. Movie stars are not famous, overnight. Leaders are not considered great, overnight.

Freedom in our country as we know it today did not happen, overnight.

And we can expect our freedom and independence while on this journey are not going to happen, OVERNIGHT!

But it is important to not give up. I broke everything down into days. Small quests, small victories, but huge rewards.

Think about this for a moment. How did you feel when you started to do some of the things you use to take for granted, like breathing freely, when you started oxygen therapy or your first steps in your recovery process? Keep that thought and remember it.

That is your constant reminder towards personal freedom and independence and living your life as best you can with the cards that have been dealt to you.

The rest is easy, you make new quests and conquer more challenges. It takes time.

Our freedom and independence as a country took time and is something we as a government continue to work at every day. And, yes, a bit of a stretch when compared to achieving the same freedoms with our health struggles, but I challenge you, is it?

We should try and do the same with our own health issues. Work towards those “freedoms” every day.

Where could there be a better place? Or better time, than right now!

No matter where you are in your journey, freedom as a state of mind is important.

I wish nothing but the best for you, our country, and life itself.

‘Til next time!





– Coach Bob

Bob Rawlins, 60, of Medina, Ohio, is husband to Terese and father to their 13-year-old triplets, a soccer coach, a hospital volunteer, and marketing guru. He enjoys skiing and golfing with his SeQual eQuinox portable oxygen concentrator.  

If you have been prescribed oxygen therapy, learn more about CAIRE wearable, portable and stationary oxygen concentrators by visiting or calling 1-877-704-0878 to talk to an oxygen advisor. We also have included a convenient contact form below if you want us to reach out to you. Thank you. 

When using any oxygen therapy device please consult the applicable product instructions for use for product indications, contraindications, warnings, precautions, and detailed safety information.

*By submitting this information, I authorize CAIRE to contact me including by phone.

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