As I look back on my recovery, and remember those who were influential in my recovery, especially during those critical, uncertain early days when few had faith in me or my chances of survival.
Sister Delores, was a tall, slender woman, mid-50s, with a mass of grey curly hair and an amazing smile. She was dressed in a navy skirt and sweater, a white blouse with a buttoned down collar. She was gifted with a gentle spirit and deep compassion for the sick and injured.
I remember the day she entered my hospital room – and my life. She stood beside my bed with a folder full of papers in her hand. She placed her hand on my arm and, in her soft voice told me she knew how hard it was for me, but that I must have faith and never give up. She told me that, with God’s help, I could do this – I would do this. She reminded me I had two beautiful children to get home to. Sister said she would visit me every day to help make that happen – and she did.
Each day Sister Delores would bring me a scripture, an encouraging word and a smile. I think the encouraging smile was the most helpful because it spoke volumes of her faith and belief in me. To receive faith in my ability to heal enough to go home was huge; because at that time, I was profoundly paralyzed. I could not even speak. Sister Delores spoke to me – and for me.
She was always there to comfort me with her words, and the touch of her hand. She prayed with me and for me. She was my rock. Even though I could only speak to her with my eyes, she seemed to, understand everything I thought and felt. Her words of faith and hope helped me grow stronger and, when I weakened, her soothing words brought me peace and courage.
All during my therapy and recovery – and whenever we crossed paths in the hallway, she would stop and encouraged and blessed me with her words, her faith, her heart. Kate, you can do this. You will do this. You are doing it. Whether with words or a smile, or a touch of her hand, she gave me hope and the encouragement to carry on – and eventually win.
Sister Delores has since passed on but this dear friend – this healing angel – will always be remembered. Her words and her memory stay with me as I am sure they do for hundreds of other souls she touched. She was a shining example to me. We never know the impact we will have on someone. Recently, I received a note from a client who struggles with a myriad of disabilities:
Hello Kate, I’m glad you are on my side. I know I am not your only client and yet when I speak or write to you I feel like I am. And that’s something you didn’t learn in books. I’m learning from you how to treat and look out for others.
Sister Delores’ qualities as a professional caregiver, a friend, and as a healer, are what I hope to emulate. I hope her spirit will continue to strive through me to as I help others on their journeys.
There are many healing angels in my book Paralyzed but not Powerless. Stay tuned for other stories of other healing angels. The most important story is yours. You too, can be a healing angel. All it takes are hope, faith and the touch of encouragement. Who will you touch today?