Sued51's Blog

{March 9, 2011}   A Simple Encounter

I have a soft spot for the elderly (probably because I’m getting closer to being that every day).  I wanted to share this story because it moved me and made me think about how we all need to treat the elderly with more patience, consideration, and caring.

I was cashiering the other day when an older gentleman showed me his id to get the military discount.  I smiled at him as I considered that he must be a WWII vet, like my father, and I asked him how he was.

“My wife is sick…very sick,” he said.

I said, “I’m sorry; I hope she will be feeling better soon.”  He shook his head, “It will only be a few days.”  I felt my stomach drop.

I told him, “I just lost my father before Christmas.  He and my mother had been married for almost 65 years.”

He asked me, “Does she live alone?”

I replied, “Yes, but she has a lot of people to stop by and see her.”

He nodded, looked down and murmured, “I don’t know what I’m going to do.”  I wanted to cry for him.

Again, I said, “I’m sorry, sir.”  He murmured again, “I don’t know what I’m going to do…” and grabbed my hand.  I squeezed his hand and he shuffled away.  I hope it made him feel that someone cared and maybe he felt a little less alone.

I waited on the next customer with watery eyes.  I wished could do something about the loneliness, the sadness that doesn’t seem to have any cure.

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