He said, My brother is good at visiting now. He learnt how from seeing our father regularly after his stroke. At first he’d say, I don’t know what to do, or say. Don’t know if he is taking anything in or even understands me anymore.

I then said, Just sit there quietly if necessary. So my brother learnt how to visit. When he came to see me I was asleep, so he sat quietly in that chair. Then I woke up and we talked.

Hospital visiting: giving of oneself in seriousness, in sadness, in service, in silence, in the moment, in daftness and laughter. This evening I arrived heavy and left lighter. Arrived readied to give and left having shared.

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2 thoughts on “Visiting”

  1. Good hospital visitors are a boon. It’s exhausting for the person being visited if they have to take the lead. Being able to sit in companionable silence seems a rare thing. Just being there is enough. Nice to share.

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