Bringing Peace to the Heart of Strangers
I was surprised to see a young girl lying on the hospital bed. The previous patients we had seen were all in their 70s and up. She looked to be in her early 20s, her skin was fair and her features still child-like.
We were surprised to find out that she was 29, married with a 7 months old baby. Still recovering from dengue fever, she smiled and welcomed us as we spoke with her. My father talked about illness and how while it may be painful, it can sometimes be a blessing as it stops us amidst our busy schedule, gives us rest and also allows us to appreciate those around us and renew one’s faith.
It reminded me of the time where I was so ill I threw up 8 times in one night and my dad tirelessly took care of me. It really was a blessing because I got to be pampered and witness my dad’s love for me. Throughout the conversation, I could see the girl’s eyes slowly starting to water.
Before long, tears started to stream down her eyes and she wiped them away hastily. My father asked her what was wrong. In between sobs, she explained that she had never been this sick her entire life and she was afraid; afraid that if something happened to her, no one would care for her young baby.
We took her hand, encouraged her and prayed for her recovery and her family. As we handed out the tissue, she blew her nose and smiled, looking visibly more relaxed and relieved.
This is a typical Saturday for my dad, although the stories and patients may be different. For the past 3 years, he has been visiting patients to encourage them and pray for their health. I’m so proud of my dad, he’s always been such an influence and inspiration to my character.
“I think we get more than what we give,” He said, referring to the courage and strength we can learn from each patient. He confessed to me later that he was so touched by her tears he actually didn’t know what to say.
I agree. As I took the hands of these strangers, or stroked their white thinning hair, I couldn’t help but feel that I’ve known them forever. It’s quite amazing how little you need to do to be able to comfort someone and be there for them.