Hospital Window

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 distance.

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.”

The man laid back in his bed. His eyes welled up with tears
as he remembered his dear friend.

Remember: Sometimes to ease another’s pain and
discomfort, lessens your own.

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