I was tempted not to visit our usual suspects on Mother’s Day this year. In fact, Skyy and I did not go to the VA. There was something nagging me about “calling off” at ManorCare. I just could not do it. I explained this to my wife and at 12:30, Skyy and I headed out to visit. Luckily, Kellee and our daughter went out to eat for lunch, which freed up some time for our visit.
Our visit was pretty much routine. Skyy was greeting all of the residents with wagging tail and laughing mouth as is usual.
When we made it down to one part of the building where we heard a woman shouting. I could not make out exactly what she was hollering about, but it seemed, as if she was upset. I had seen this type of behavior before. It normally stems from the ailment a person has. I do not know what infliction the woman shouting had, in fact, I do not know anyone’s diagnosis ever. I do not ask, because it is none of my business. My business there is to spread love and joy through a 43-pound ball of fur.
I was able to tell we were getting closer to the room with the shouting woman because the noise was growing louder. As we progressed room by room, it was certainly apparent that we were getting near. When we finally arrived at the room, our escort said that perhaps we should skip this room as she seemed agitated. At that very moment, God said to me, “ Dan, you need to go see this woman. She can use a bit of Skyy’s talents.” I informed our escort that I would like to try to visit her. We proceeded into the room.
The room was dark and lit by a nice table lamp that gave off a yellowish homey glow. The resident was sitting up in her bed. She stopped yelling when we entered. I inquired if the woman would like to see Skyy today. At first, she looked at me bewildered. I could see her trying to comprehend who I was. Since she did not recognize me, she looked down to see Skyy sitting at my feet. I again inquired if she would like to see Skyy today. She slowly nodded her head in agreement.
I walked Skyy aound her bed and told him to sit. He obeyed as he always does, gazing at the woman with a giant welcoming smile on his face.
She just stared at him sitting there. After a moment I asked her if she would like to pet him. Silently she reached out and started to stroke his head. She started to smile. She treid to lean over and give him a kiss, I asked her if she would like it if Skyy would jump into bed with her. She said yes. I told Skyy to jump up, which he did and he immediately went into a sit position right next to the woman.
At this moment, she began to weep. She kept saying how beautiful Skyy was all the while she was petting him and hugging him. Skyy just sat there enjoying the attention. After a few minutes, Skyy could sense that she was done, and he jumped down. By this time, the woman had an enormous grin on her face to match Skyy’s.
Before we left her room, I knew that God wanted me to make an impression to last some time with this woman. Now, back in the day, patients in hospitals would have their charts hanging at the foot of the bed. The doctors would walk into the room stand at the foot of the bed, read the chart, and speak with the patients. Knowing this, I have trained Skyy to put his front paws up on the footboard of resident’s beds with the command of “play doctor”.
I told the woman that not only his he good looking, but he is smart too.
“In fact”, I said, “He thinks he is a doctor!”
I gave Skyy the command of play doctor and he instantly placed his front paws on her footboard and laughingly looked at her. Our resident started to heartily laugh.
She said, “He really does think he’s a doctor, doesn’t he?”
I said yes and promised to see her again soon and we exited the room.
We were in ear shot of that room for the next 15 minutes, and during that entire time, I did not hear a peep from the woman. Driving on my way home is when I was able to piece this all together. God had a plan for Skyy and I on Mother’s Day and it surrounded one resident on this special day. He did not want this mother to be upset so He sent Skyy and I.
I am blessed to have such a cool dog who is willing to do God’s bidding without question. I need to be more like that.