It was a busy morning, approximately 08:30 am, when an elderly gentleman in his 80′s arrived to have stitches removed from his thumb. He stated that he was in a hurry as he had an appointment at 9 am. I took his vital signs and had him take a seat, knowing it would be over an hour before someone would to able to see him. I saw him looking repeatedly at his watch and decided, since I was not busy with another patient, I would evaluate his wound.
On examination, it was well-healed, so I talked to one of the doctors, got the needed supplies to remove his stitches and redressed his wound. While taking care of his wound, we began to engage in conversation. I asked him if he had an important appointment that morning, as he seemed to be in such a hurry.
The gentleman told me no; that he only needed to go to the nursing home to eat breakfast with his wife. I then inquired as to her health. He told me that she had been there for a while already and that she was a victim of Alzheimer Disease.
As we talked, and I finished dressing his wound, I asked if she would be worried if he was a bit late. He replied that she no longer knew who he was; that she had not recognized him for five years now. I was surprised, and asked him. “And you still go every morning, even though she doesn’t know who you are?”
He smiled as he patted my hand and said: “She doesn’t know me, but I still know who she is.”
I had to hold back my tears as he left. I had goose bumps on my arm, and thought: “That is the kind of love I want in my life.”
True love is neither physical, nor romantic. True love is an acceptance of all that is, has been, will be, and will not be
Love is to love someone for who they are, who they were, and who they will be.