Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Making other people happy.....

My uncle was sleeping so the three of us sat in the corner of his hospital room and talked in hushed tones.

The doctor took my aunt's hands and gently smiled. "You're making the right decision. We can't make him any better at this point. Hospice will take good care of him."

She talked about the dying process, trying to reassure my aunt, telling her it's in God's hands now.

My uncle knows he's dying or at least understands he's too sick to go back home, so he agreed to be taken to a hospice facility versus home care.

He was apprehensive because now my uncle is starting over again at a new place. We'd gotten close to all the hospital staff these past couple months.

The nurse who was getting him ready to leave the hospital, knelt down by his bed, gripped his hand and said, "You take care of yourself, okay?"

"You're a super girl," my uncle replied in a weak voice. "I love you."

"I love you too," she said giving him a hug.

I did my very best NOT to cry at that moment.

My cousin drove in from Ohio for Father's Day weekend so my uncle could see his grandchildren....probably for the last time. She brought with her a cluster of helium-filled balloons (9 in total). Colorful and shiny, they bobbed and weaved, adding a little fun to the atmosphere.

So when my uncle was being transported out his room yesterday evening to go to the hospice center, I told the nurse we no longer needed the balloons. To please give one to each patient on our floor, especially those that don't get a lot of visitors or have family.

I talked with my cousin on the phone that night, mentioning passing the balloons along to cheer up the other patients and brighten their day.

"Good idea," my cousin said. "That's what it's all about. Making other people happy."


Anonymous said...

My thoughts are with you all. Very nice gesture to have the balloons delivered.

Randuwa2 said...

I am crying tears of empathy. This is really what it's about.

Neurotic Workaholic said...

That's really nice of you to give the balloons to the other patients. And I'm sorry about what you, your uncle, and your family are going through. I wish I could write something that would make you feel better.

Mike said...

Awwww.... Dean, what a great idea with the balloons!!! That's so beautiful!!!

Winter said...

almost got those helium balloons when i was hospitalised a few years back, mum asked if i wanted. and i said no lol. maybe they are not my thing.. still aren't into them for any occasion >.< hope that your aunt can handle the loss well.

Octavius said...

I hope you're taking the time to make yourself happy mate.

I still think of you often.


Dean Grey said...


I just thought it'd be nice to pass them on to others that didn't have many visitors.



That's sweet of you!


Neurotic Workaholic!

Sometimes it's hard to know what to say in situations like this.






You're the first person to say they don't like those balloons! LOL



You're one of the best "kiwis" out there!


Everyone's thoughtful comments are greatly appreciated!


Anonymous said...

you are such a sweet spirit my friend. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.

naturgesetz said...

This is a really touching post. Everybody is doing so well, being so good.

I hope your uncle will be comfortable and at peace during his time in the hospice facility, and that you and your aunt will be comforted by the good care he gets from them as well as by your own attention to him.

R. Burnett Baker said...

I know some of what you're going through, but every situation is unique. I just lost my Dad two weeks ago, and was there touching his forehead and holding his arm when he passed gently.

I know, Dean. I've kept the tears at bay for my mother. I've cried a few, but waiting for the dam to break when I'm ready for the flood.

Blessings to you and your family. I recently posted several poems about this experience. You'll get through it, and hopefully be stronger in your heart and mind.


Kathleen Coy said...

Beautiful post, Dean! That is what it's all about... if people do one nice gesture every day, (or heck, even every week!) think of how it could change the world. I know there's been times I was having a bad day, and just a genuine smile or kind word from a total stranger was enough to change my whole outlook, and therefore, my day.

Hugs to you, and good job on sharing the balloons!


PS. Thanks for the kind words about the Blog of Note!!

Anonymous said...

You get it Dean! That's what life should be about. Paying it forward and sharing with others.

It's in those moments that we practice this that we realize that even the smallest act of kindness, can make your heart swell to twice its size.

Good for you. Good on you.

Dean Grey said...


I appreciate the kind words!



As you noted, my aunt feels better knowing the hospice staff have been caring for my uncle so well.



I'm so sorry for your loss. Two weeks wasn't that long ago. I'm sure the emotions are still pretty raw for you.




We need to get you some balloons for getting Blogs of Note!



I agree with you, Corey!


Thanks to all of you for the supportive feedback!