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My faith in human kindness has decreased over the years. When you are a child, you believe that everyone is kind-hearted. You have not yet been jaded.

When you are 50 years old, you start to believe that the hustle and bustle of life makes everyone nasty and angry, and you think people don’t care about how they treat each other, so you start to do some of the same.

However, my recent experience has me thinking like a child again.

In 2013, my husband was diagnosed with giant cell carcinoma. Sounds scary, right? You have no idea. He was diagnosed in August and died in December. Those four months of my life were the worst ever, by far.

This experience, however, has renewed my faith in human kindness. Family members, friends, neighbors, co-workers, hospital personnel and complete strangers have really taught me something about life and kindness.

During those four months, my daughter and I were trying to juggle daily hospital visits, work and other obligations.

Neighbors mowed our lawn because we had no time. Thank you!

When the weather changed and the snow started to fall, neighbors plowed and shoveled our driveway and walk. Thank you!

When we had forgotten to move our car to the other side of the street when parking changed – we live in Buffalo and parking changes two times per week – our neighbors made sure that the parking enforcement officers did not ticket our car. Thank you!

When my husband was moved from the hospital to a sub-acute care facility, the hospital social worker cried with me because we were able to get him into a decent facility with her intense efforts. Thank you!

My husband was cared for by many very caring and competent staff members at the hospital, cancer facility and sub-acute care facility, including nurses, aides, doctors and physical therapists. Thank you!

There was the time a cafeteria worker allowed me a free dinner for my husband because the hospital dinner that was delivered to him was not what he had ordered. Thank you!

There was also the time that the hospital nurse was behind me in line at the cafeteria and bought my meal for me, knowing what I had been going through. Thank you!

Furthermore, when my husband was moved to sub-acute care and transportation to the cancer hospital for radiation treatment was not provided by health insurance, my family chipped in money to pay for that transportation. Thank you!

My co-workers also pitched in money for that transportation. Thank you!

Countless meals were provided by family, friends and co-workers. Thank you!

The oncologist at the cancer hospital had to gain special privileges to visit the hospital my husband was in and took time from his busy schedule to come there to explain my husband’s disease to me, my husband and our daughter. Thank you!

Lastly, we received many concerned phone calls and people I met in passing offered to help in any way at all. Thank you!

My faith in human kindness has been restored and has taught me to be a better person. The only way I can think of repaying all this outstanding kindness is to pass it on. Thank you!