Foundation, NJ U. S. A
the Message Continues ... 8/130
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Newsletter for June 2012
Two men, both seriously ill, occupied the same hospital room.
One man was allowed to sit up in his bed for an hour each afternoon
to help drain the fluid from his lungs. His bed was next to the room's
only window. The other man had to spend all his time flat on his back.
The men talked for hours on end. They spoke of their wives and
families, their homes, their jobs, their involvement in the military
service, where they had been on vacation.
Every afternoon when the man in the bed by the window could sit up,
he would pass the time by describing to his roommate all the things
he could see outside the window.
The man in the other bed began to live for those one-hour periods
where his world would be broadened and enlivened by all the activity
and color of the world outside.
The window overlooked a park with a lovely lake.
Ducks and swans played on the water while children sailed their
model boats. Young lovers walked arm in arm amidst flowers of
every color and a fine view of the city skyline could be seen in the
As the man by the window described all this in exquisite detail,
the man on the other side of the room would close his eyes and
imagine the picturesque scene.
One warm afternoon the man by the window described a parade
passing by. Although the other man couldn't hear the band - he
could see it. In his mind's eye as the gentleman by the window
portrayed it with descriptive words.
Days and weeks passed. One morning, the day nurse arrived to bring
water for their baths only to find the lifeless body of the man by the
window, who had died peacefully in his sleep. She was saddened and
called the hospital attendants to take the body away.
As soon as it seemed appropriate, the other man asked if he could be
moved next to the window. The nurse was happy to make the switch,
and after making sure he was comfortable, she left him alone.
Slowly, painfully, he propped himself up on one elbow to take his first
look at the real world outside. He strained to slowly turn to look out the
window beside the bed. It faced a blank wall.
The man asked the nurse what could have compelled his deceased
roommate who had described such wonderful things outside this window.
The nurse responded that the man was blind and could not even see the
wall. She said, "Perhaps he just wanted to encourage you."
Epilogue: There is tremendous happiness in making others
happy, despite our own situations. Shared grief is half the sorrow,
but happiness when shared, is doubled.
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