I have a patient who has come to our facility for a short stay of rehab, she plans on going home when she is stronger and requires less help. Today I went to see her in her room (she is currently too weak to even sit up) and she was by herself. As we began to do some activities her husband came out of the restroom and sat in the recliner. Now just to give you an idea & to set the scene for visual purposes I will describe this couple for you. The husband is 89, he is approximately 5′ 5 in feet (uses a 4 wheel walker), slender, and has a full head of white hair. I have never seen him without a gentle smile, he has blue eyes, and for 89 he has very little wrinkles. The patient (wife) is a medium build, also white hair that is shoulder length, blue eyes, and very sarcastic (which I love and it happens to be my kind of language). She was born and raised in Texas and her husband was raised in Lafayette, Louisiana- which he also speaks French very well.
He usually sits in the recliner or leaves the room to walk around to give her some space during therapy. Today he stayed. She began to boost proudly that her husband just got back from taking his drivers test and he passed, she was so excited and proud! I told her for 89 thats great! I don’t know a lot of 89 yr olds still driving! She then began to tease her husband saying that he probably charmed the girls behind the desk by talking French to them. We laughed, he just gave a slight nod, never saying anything. He’s so quiet!
She seemed to be having some pain, probably soreness from the therapy these past days and also from having a small procedure. I attempted to distract her and began asking about his ability to speak French. She called out her husbands name and asked him to come near her. When he came to her bed…well, he had this twinkle, this glistening in his eyes. It was like, he was eager to please her. To be beckoned by her. She said “Honey, do you speak French?” He began (fluently) speaking and talking to her. She wasn’t able to speak French, but she understood it very well. She even responded a few times when he asked her questions. He then took her hand so gently and sweetly. You’re not ready for this people. He began singing their wedding song. In French. His gaze never once left her eyes, nor did her gaze leave his eyes. Not once! I felt like I was in the presence of a special moment. Their moment. It was like I wasn’t in the room.
He then whispered in her ear something in French and she replied “Oh don’t honey, then I’ll be sad too.” I’m not going to lie, I might’ve cried a little, or a lot! He looked at me and said “We’ve been together 50 years. She’s my girl. My wonder woman.” Sigh. How amazing to witness this true love, this couple who no doubt has been there for each other through some rough times, through thick and thin. God’s definition of true love can be found in 1 Corinthians 13:4-7. I want to pull out verse 7, [Love] beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. The definition of unconditional love is known as affection without any limitations or love without conditions.
Thomas Monson said this of his late wife “She was the love of my life. My trusted confident. My closest friend. To say that I miss her does not convey the depth of my feelings.” I find it absolutely amazing when 2 people have been together for that long and have kept the love alive. To have a desire to please their loves. Lord, thank you for placing people and circumstances in my life so I may never forget about your never ending love, God’s unconditional love. May we take note of our elders before us and never lose site of whats important. This isn’t something I would normally write about, but I do like to write about my day at work, especially when it ends like this. This was just what I needed to end my busy, tiring, and headache filled day. Love endureth all things…