“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen nor even touched, but just felt in the heart.” –Helen Keller
I was in a bad mood today. Sometimes you wake up in the morning and things just don’t go great. I forgot my lunch and had to go to the grocery store. I picked out a pre-made salad from the produce section and grabbed a juice. The self-checkout lines were busy so I went to the 12 items or less line. I was behind a few people, so I was reading magazine covers about Meghan Markel and General Hospital and Elon Musk, when I heard, “You work at Heart ‘n Home?”
Instantly I was brought back to the moment and my eyes met the cashier. She was a younger girl. I responded yes to her question and was expecting her to ask what I do or what hospice is. Instead, she mentioned her grandfather’s name. I instantly got chills. This man had only been on services a few months before he passed. I knew his wife well enough through the community and had heard she had been dealing with some health problems. It wasn’t the content of our exchange that impacted me so deeply, it was that in the moment we spent together, we touched her grief, and in talking about her loss, we were able to process it just a little bit more.
We talked about how funny her grandfather was. How proud of him she was. That he was a Veteran. Bereavement isn’t something that ever ends, but it does change. And the moments when we are able to share our grief with others can be felt as messages from our loved ones that we are not alone. I believe that her grandfather put me there in his granddaughter’s line so that we could share his memory. I remember him, and his wife, and his granddaughter, and I am enriched by their love. How could anyone stay in a bad mood after that?
La Pine & Bend Volunteer Coordinator
Heart ‘n Home Hospice & Palliative Care, LLC