While they are staffed with plenty of good people, hospitals are generally not a fun place to be.
We go to the hospital only for serious reasons. In some cases, we might be sick or in recovery from surgery. Even worse, we may simply be there to visit someone we love who is ill. Anyone stuck in a hospital bed is likely facing a scary situation and the older we get, the more serious these trips can be. Ultimately, we rely on the kindness of our loved ones to get us through these hard times.
In this story out of Seneca, Kansas, the nursing staff also had plenty of extra love to give.
Helen Schmelze was a 94-year-old grandma who was ill and in the hospital with her family.
Although she had fought the illness, she knew that her time had likely come. It was a sad time for the entire family who had come to visit her, though it was also very affecting to one nurse aide in particular. The aide was 18-year-old Isabella Jennings, who said that Schmelze had been much more than just a patient to her:
“I loved Helen and I counted her as a friend.”
To show her love and to offer Schmelze some comfort, Jennings decided to sing for her one last time.
Jennings first asked Schmelze if it was ok if she sang a tune for her. After getting the approval, Jennings sets into a rendition of “In the Garden,” a gospel hymn originally written by C. Austin Miles. Her voice in the video is gentle and beautiful and the moment that everyone in the hospital room shared that day is one that is sure to be cherished for a lifetime.
The family filmed the entire performance and later posted it to YouTube.
Though the clip has gone viral, the family says they purposefully didn’t pursue licensing or exclusivity on the video so that the entire world could see Jennings’ kindness:
“This video is not monetized and we are not seeking licensing. The daily compassion of unknown numbers of good health care workers goes unnoticed by many. Thank you for the gifts you share and the love for patients you bestow.”
It’s not hard to see why this story has touched so many people’s hearts.
Caring for a loved one in their final hours is never easy, though it helps when the care staff cares as much about your loved ones as you do.
Thanks to Jennings for her compassion and rest in peace, Grandma Helen.
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