Thursday, May 1, 2014

You Get What You Give

This week while I was visiting my dad in the hospital, one of the administrators came in to see him. He has known her for more than three years as he has undergone nearly 100 chemotherapy treatments.

There were some things that my dad needed for his care that she said she would help us obtain. She also went out of her way to make sure he was comfortable and being well taken care of.

When she walked out, my dad first expressed his gratitude for her help, but then he looked at me, shrugged his shoulders and said, "You get what you give."

I said, "You're right dad. You have given them a lot."

It's a life lesson that brought me near tears. For more than three years, as he has walked his own cancer journey, he has been a rock of support at his chemotherapy office. The life of the party. The bringer of love. Not a nurse walks past him without a hug and a kiss.

He became the go-to expert in the office. Whenever a new patient came in that needed support or guidance or encouragement, they sent him to my dad. "What, this patient doesn't want a port?" My dad says, "Why wouldn't you want a port? It makes it so much easier."

Many times my mom and dad have made house calls to cancer patients struggling with the diagnosis. My dad also attended the cancer support group whenever it was requested of him so he could share his amazing story of success. His positive attitude has been infectious.

One nurse I spoke with last week said, "He is the hero of our office. We will do anything for him."

So, now, as the cancer attempts to grow and he is the one who needs support, all of those people he has helped along the way are there for him.

It's such a beautiful picture in my mind of everyone giving love and getting it in return. And I'm seeing it in action right before my eyes. It's true, you get what you give.

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