Is there someone in your world who you don’t know very well, but you are always happy to see? Someone who can make a good day even better, or a gloomy day cheerful?
Someone you’ve been meaning to sit down and have a chat with, but life just gets in the way?
That someone for me is Lawrence.
And, thanks to a snafu in the Operating Room schedule, I was able to get to know him a little better, recently. What I discovered was amazing. And I think you’ll agree.
Lawrence has worked at my hospital for 26 years. He started out in Environmental Services (Housekeeping), and was promoted to Support Partner 10 years ago. A Support Partner in our hospital brings the patients to the pre-operative area, and gets them comfortable and ready for the nurse to start the IV fluids for their surgeries.
You can pick Lawrence out of the crowd every morning. He offers a great smile and cheerful comment to everyone he sees.
Here’s a little bit of wisdom he shared with me:
“I treat every patient as if they were my own family member. I try to remember the patient and call them by name, and I check on them in the Recovery Room.
“The best part of my job is that I get to interact with the patients and their families. I may not be as skilled as others who work here or have the accolades, but I think God blessed me with a personality that I can be a blessing to someone or become a listener.
“Working here, we become listeners, counselors, advisors. We step into our job and wear all kinds of hats.
“There may be changes at our hospital, but I’m going to remain the same and continue to have compassion and empathy towards people.
“I think people should do three things every day:
- Tell your loved ones you love them.”
How could my day not be turned around after a few minutes of conversation with Lawrence?
My conversation with Lawrence changed my perspective.
At the end of the day, after I finished my cases, and I made my way to the locker room and the parking garage, my eyes were more open.
I saw nurses, technicians and surgeons in the hallway that I had seen on and off for 20 years.
I saw family members of patients in the waiting area; some looked worried, others tried to keep their young children content and quiet during the wait.
As I walked the hallways, an image as real and true as you and me came to my mind: the image of an angel around every corner.
I believe that everywhere we go, there are people just like Lawrence. There are Angels with a soft story to tell; angels who help make a difference in other people’s lives.
That day, as I made my way home, I saw more than my share of angels.