Here is a positive story of kindness in the midst of grief and emotional upheaval.
My Dad died in February, 2016 at age 87 while under hospice care. The preceding 60 days were intense: watching his suffering while juggling caregiving, replete with all the medical, financial and emotional decisions required. It felt as if I was a car. Daily revving up, tooling down the road, gingerly turning this way and that (hospital one week, rehab, home 2 weeks for the holidays, rehospitalization due to MRSA from rehab, return to a different rehab) — thinking we were headed to a certain place (long-term nursing care) only to realize we had sadly made our final turn onto Hospice Lane.
Abrupt stop. Literally. Head flinging back. Shock.
He was enrolled in hospice care on a Monday, arrived at the hospice house Tuesday at dinner time and passed that night in the wee morning. The dreaded middle-of-the night-call came. Unexpected, so soon. Final.
Enter stage left: an unseen hand.
Just a few days before he passed, I took a break from my hospital/nursing home routine to see a movie and eat ice scream (lol) at the mall. I also treated myself to a new handbag large enough to tote the folder with Dad’s medical and legal papers. Every caregiver can relate to the importance of notes and documentation.
So excited was I about my new sale bag, I HAD to use it immediately. Against my better judgment, I transferred all items to my colorful purchase and discarded my outdated tote into the trash. Being consistently practical, it felt really freeing to spontaneously use the new handbag right away.
Nursing home regulations discourage giving cash to the elderly, so they have resident trust accounts where family can deposit petty cash for miscellaneous purchases. I created his account, retaining his additional cash and kept his wallet contents separate from mine by folding it in a sheet of paper, keeping it in a side compartment of my former tote.
A few days after the movie date/shopping trip, Dad passed. Sometime later, I went in search of the “cash packet.” It was not in my new handbag. Oh no! I felt SO BAD … usually responsible daughter throws poor old dude’s money away.
Guilt ridden, I confess to my husband who tries to console me. Eventually, I shrug it off as a stupid mistake.
Yesterday, a thick envelope addressed to Dad arrives by mail. I don’t recognize the return address. Look at the contents!
The note caused me to cry for joy … I literally wept at the kindness of this person I’d never met. One who could have kept the cash and discarded the ID with no one ever knowing.
Instead, they did the right thing.
We serve a God of restoration, One who gives back what has been lost.
This stranger’s kindness impacted me greatly. May God mightily bless this beautiful soul for their honesty. Read more inspiring true stories of kindness here
Christian inspirational writer of truth that makes darkness tremble. Author of Lion in My Garden devotional.