Unexpected kindness

I will admit that I am becoming emotionally attached to the patients at the cancer center.

I am uncomfortable with my inability to communicate with those patients who speak only Spanish but continue my language lessons so that I can better communicate with them when they arrive for their appointments. I would enjoy making small talk with them if I could only speak their language.

Recently, I have noticed an odd phenomenon. When a new Spanish-only patient arrives and communicates with me in only his or her native language (even after I have indicated that I speak only English), another established patient will approach my desk and begin to translate the conversation between me and the new patient.

I graciously thank the patient who took the time to translate for us but silently wonder and think about the random act of kindness that took place when a patient stepped in to help me communicate with another patient.

I am constantly surprised by unexpected kindness and the feeling caused by this kindness remains with me.

I can’t help but care deeply for the people  I work with every day.

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2 Responses to Unexpected kindness

  1. weggieboy says:

    It’s for the benefit of you both! It is a gesture that benefits all concerned, and I’m sure the rewards are appreciated all around!

    When I was a patient in University Hospital in Denver, many of the orderlies were from Central America and spoke little English. I spoke little Spanish, but spoke what I could, mixed in with English when the Spanish escaped me, so they knew I appreciated what they did to make my stay no less beneficial than the efforts of the medical staff. (Cleanliness in a hospital, of course, is important for infection control, and my condition involved a suppressed immune system.)

    We got along, stumbling with each other’s language, but gaining a little better grasp of the same than we had before. I was hospitalized there for a month, and left with a passable level of proficiency in Spanish. (If one didn’t make too much of my poor vocabulary and sorry understanding of the grammar! LOL!)

  2. I think it will brighten the patients day to see someone who actually cares deeply and to also to get involved in conversation with people.

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