I’ve been a reluctant blogger of late. For my readers and fellow writers who follow me, I haven’t wanted to bog you down with unnecessary drivel. And so, when I haven’t felt I had something important to say, I just haven’t said anything. Today, though, I want to share with you the story of a friend. It’s worth something.
A friend of mine, I’ll call him D., recently passed away, and I was fortunate enough to attend his funeral. Funerals are full of wonderful stories that we’ve never heard before, and his was no exception. During the eulogy, this story was related:
D. was an Eagle scout who loved the outdoors. On one particular scouting trip, his younger brother J. was also along. When the scouts reached their campsite, D. noticed that J. was not with them. So, D. hiked back along the trail to look for him. Sure enough, J. had gotten lost. As D. got ready to guide him to the others, he offered to carry his brother’s heavy pack for him, an offer that was accepted. They made their way back up the trail, but just before coming within sight of the other scouts, D. returned J.’s pack to him, to carry into the camp himself. D. never told anyone that his brother had been lost, nor that he had been the one to shoulder the heavy pack.
This story about my friend touched me. He had suffered from Parkinson’s Disease for 20 years, although I had only known him for 15. I knew him to be a kind and patient man, but I didn’t know the depths of it.
There are many people in our paths that we can help. The first challenge is to make sure we help them, but the second is illustrated by my friend. Do we help them and allow them to maintain their dignity? I’m not sure that we do or that we even consider it. My friend, in his passing, has just taught me to be more aware of that very thing, and hopefully by being aware, I will do something about it.