Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Kindness at the VA (Personal)

Earlier this week at was at the VA hospital in my area to get a medical problem checked out. I sat down in the waiting area and sighed as I looked at the clock and all the other patients that were waiting with me. I knew from past experience that this could be a long day. I did not have an appointment so I figured I would be stuck in the chair, watching soap operas on the television for hours. The thing is, I can't stand soap operas, and there wasn't a single veteran that seemed interested in them either. We were are stuck in this situation together and it wasn't a pleasant one.

I watched as this middle aged woman walked into the waiting area. She carried a large bag full of sandwiches. She kindly smiled at each veteran that was sitting in the waiting area and offered them a sandwich. She did not work for the VA or any other service organization. She just cared about veterans and wanted to make sure that they were well fed. She got to my location and offered me a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. I had not eaten that day so I gladly accepted it and thanked her warmly.

I mention this experience because I have encountered so much negativity at VA hospitals in the past. There have been many times where staff has been excessively rude and uncaring. I guess I have developed an expectation to not be treated well during my appointments. Your experiences will vary! Yet this kind and compassionate woman has changed my mind. People like her probably don't know how much people like us appreciate these kind acts. I wish I got her name and learned more about her.

So if you are reading this post Ma'am, I would like to thank you for the peanut butter and jelly sandwich. It really made my day!

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