Making assumptions

It is easy to ignore an elderly person who is moving oddly, making strange sounds, and does not communicate. There is a white-haired woman where my mom lives who walks laboriously with a shuffle, has her left arm bent and extended awkwardly, and makes the repetitious sound of “Deedeedeedee.” I have never seen her interact with any other resident or with staff.

One day we happened to be at the same spot at the same time. I stopped in front of her. I looked at her directly in her eyes. She stopped. Her head moved up and she stared directly into my eyes. I saw awareness.  I saw life!

We both stood there. We were “talking” with our eyes. We were sharing a precious moment. She knew I “saw” her. After about 60 seconds of being with one another, she leaned forward and kissed me on the cheek. It was the first time I had seen any new behavior. I was deeply touched.

I have no idea of this precious woman’s medical history. What I do know now, without a doubt, is that she is still “in there.” She may not be able to verbally communicate.  She may appear odd and even scary. Yet, she is able to see love and express love. She knows when she is seen. I now look for her each time I visit my mom. I take that moment of being with her without words, with tender exchange of eye contact. It always ends with her leaning over to kiss my cheek and my returning the affection of my new friend.

4 Responses to “Making assumptions”

  1. A beautifull story that for me captures the love and honor we all share with one another, shareing the idea that we are in fact oneanother… Thank you for this moment.

  2. Thank you for your comment, Windrider!

  3. Thank you for your comment, Windrider!

  4. Thank you for your comment, Windrider!

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