Leaning over and speaking loudly to the elderly patient, she said, “Your son is here.”
With great effort, the old man’s unfocused eyes opened, then flickered shut again. The young man squeezed the aged hand in his and sat beside the bed.
Throughout the night he sat there, holding the old man’s hand and whispering words of comfort.
By morning light, the patient had died. In moments, hospital staff swarmed into the room to turn off machines and remove needles.
The nurse stepped over to the young man’s side and began to offer sympathy, but he interrupted her.
“Who was that man?” he asked.
The startled nurse replied, “I thought he was your father!”
“No, he was not my father,” he answered. “I never saw him before in my life.” “Then why didn’t you say something when I took you to him?”
“I realized he needed his son and his son wasn’t here,” the man explained. “And since he was too sick to recognize that I was not his son, I knew he needed me.”
Do we need to be reminded that nobody should have to die alone? Likewise, nobody should have to grieve alone or cry alone. Or laugh alone or celebrate alone.
We are made to travel life’s journey hand in hand. There is someone ready to grasp your hand today, and someone hoping you will take his or her hand.
Remember to hang on to one another!
Lord help me live from day to day
In such a self-forgetful way
That even when I kneel to pray
My prayer shall be for others.