Have you ever had a random encounter or fleeting moment with a stranger that stuck with you?
When I saw this Daily Prompt, I was immediately struck to write an entry.
Last fall, I was sitting in the waiting room of one of my Doctors. Whenever I go there, it seems like a full room and I wait for a long time. On this particular morning (2 days prior to my Mother’s birthday), there weren’t many people. I was sitting alone at one point and a woman came into the office for her appointment that day. After “checking-in” with the receptionist, she sat down in a chair facing me. The waiting room area is not very big at all either. I was sitting alone and she had come alone for her appointment. I can’t even remember all of the details, or what prompted the beginning of the conversation, but she was an open individual and began talking to me. I am not a person who will randomly tell my life story to any stranger that I meet, or even strike up a conversation with someone whom I don’t know. I do have ‘people skills’ and have worked as a public servant for many years. On this day, as she began talking with me, and telling me so much about her current health situation; I couldn’t help but feel that we were there in that room together at that time for a reason. It may have been my Mother’s way of saying that I should just be there for someone else. See, this lady was not much older than myself (in her mid 40’s most likely) and she had moved with her family to our state from another state. She talked about how her Doctors in that other state had missed reading her scans for breast cancer. But the Doctors here found it. I wish I could remember more of the details. She told me about her young daughter (under age 15 I’m sure) and in my soul I felt like I was just placed there to be an ear to listen for her. She was in the office for an appointment because the cancer may have returned and I feel that just listening to her was all that she needed to comfort her in that moment. I know what its like to attend an appointment and not know what the next step will be for treatment. My husband will go along with me when I ask him to; especially if I’m really concerned/scared about the answers which I will be getting. Fortunately, I do not have, nor did I ever have, cancer of any type.
Prior to going in for my appointment, she wished me luck as well. I returned the message to her. I genuinely felt good about listening to her that day. I haven’t shared this experience with anyone, until now. It has stuck with me since that morning.
In mentioning that this appointment was two days prior to my Mother’s birthday, there is a reason.
See, just a year and a half before this appointment, my mother passed away from an aggressive type of cancer. In the last 16 years of my Mother’s life, she dealt with three different types of cancers. She did so much, especially traveling, despite what the Doctors and her family had told her about her many health ailments.
That day, I said a prayer for that lady whom I met in the Doctor’s office. I’ve thought of her often since then and wonder how she is. I hoped and prayed that her cancer had not returned.