“Annie Are You OK?”

Hello dear reader, recently I visited a swimming pool in Wola. I am not a professional swimmer, but I learnt how to swim in a natural environment, in the river and used to visit the sea as well. In my lifetime I had a couple of cases when I almost got drown, so in this blog I will speak about how to survive in the water.

First of all, avoid alcohol in case you plan to visit a place like river, lake or the sea and going to swim. Alcohol makes people disorientated and unable to measure risks appropriately.  In cold situations your body will attempt to draw blood away from your limbs and towards your vital organs to prevent heat loss. Alcohol prevents this, meaning you have an increased chance of hypothermia. In some cases sudden change of the temperature of the body under influence of alcohol may cause even a heart attack.

It is complicated to predict every single circumstance about water, but there is second general rule of survival in water – Do not panics! In my case I went too far from the shore and when I realized that, I almost panicked, but there was nobody close and I had no energy to go back. So I just lay down on the water get rest and then went back to the shore in a very calm rhythm. When you are in panic, you loose a lot of energy which is needed for swimming or remaining your head above the water. In case you are wearing a lifejacket, not moving at all or try to stay in one place is the best solution, since you can save your body heat longer to avoid hypothermia.

Second case was in the river. In case you see that the river flow is fast and it will take a person, try to give her a stick or if you can reach and you swim side by side, like in my case, pull the person with her hair towards the shore. It is important to know, if you need a help to scream immediately especially in the river, not to hold a person too tight when she is trying to save you, otherwise both of you will be in danger and not to stress your body, because it makes you heavy to carry in the water, more you relax your muscles, easier it is to move your body in the water, since you will float.

After all, a proper CPR is important in any case as well, so we should learn it, we should teach it to children as well as we can.

Speaking about CPR, there is a story behind the phrase “Annie Are You OK?”. We all remember a song “Smooth Criminal” which is one of many hits made by the late great Michael Jackson. In CPR training classes, a common dummy used is called Resusci Anne, or Rescue Annie. When conducting CPR, trainees are instructed to ask, “Annie, are you OK?” prior to continuing with resuscitation.

Apparently, Michael Jackson had taken a CPR class around the time that he wrote this song, and this line stuck with him enough to write it into a song. Rescue Annie’s story is also quite interesting, which you can find in the article “How a girl’s ‘death mask’ from the 1800s became the face of CPR dolls” By Ashley P. Taylor, published December 16, 2020.

Inspiration comes from the most unexpected places.



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