Wednesday, March 10, 2010


One Saturday night I had a voice message on my answer phone from Ann, a former cancer patient at the hospital who had moved into a nursing home. Her message indicated that she was going to get an ambulance to bring her from the nursing home to the hospital in the morning so she could ‘see Gracie.’ Knowing that was impossible and from the tone of her voice, I felt it was medication talking and disregarded it.

Sunday morning came and I was feeling a little 'off'. I had made up my mind that I would not take Gracie to the hospital for this weekend therapy visit with the patients. I called Ann and left a message on her cell that Gracie and I would not be coming, just in case.

In my jammies, I sat at my desk, paid bills, did paperwork and finally about 9:00 am got into the shower. Suddenly, I remembered that I had promised the mother of a young woman with a severe head injury that Gracie and I would visit with her daughter Sunday morning. This was haunting me. I wanted to forget and stay home, but a promise was a promise. So I got dressed, got Gracie brushed and dressed in her vest and bandana, got into the car and drove the 30 minutes to the hospital, thinking I would only be there 20 minutes or so, just long enough to visit with this one patient.

As we walked into the gym, the therapists all cheered with a sigh of relief and said “Ann here she is! Patsy, thank goodness you are here.”

Ann had done just what she said she was going to do. She had called an ambulance and gotten them to pick her up in her wheelchair with a huge oxygen tank in tow and had them drive her to the rehab hospital to see Gracie. I was speechless. I honestly couldn’t believe it.

The nurse supervisor, the security guard, and the ambulance drivers were all standing guard trying to figure out how she managed to get released from the nursing home to come to the hospital in an ambulance. There was liability to be considered and many other issues.

But where Ann is concerned where there is a will…there is indeed a way. She was a nun and had 'connections.' You see Ann had told the nursing home she had a therapy session at the rehab hospital and needed an ambulance to take her. She just didn’t tell them it was ‘pet therapy.’

So lesson learned - when you hear that small still voice inside telling you to do something, you had best pay attention!

"Give whatever there is to give!  You can always - always - give something, even it it's a simple act of kindness."
~Anne Frank~
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