Sunday, January 13, 2013

Just The Guys

Joey was alone, his life-partner had died several years before.    But he was openly, gleefully gay, and loved to share stories of the parties they'd had, the fun they'd had, the joy they'd had.   He went from room to room, meeting everyone, trying to be friendly with everyone.

Jim styled himself as a tough guy.   Former military, a little homophobic, a man of few words and even fewer revelations.    He stayed in his room.    Kept to himself.   He called me ma'am and told me thank you, but he didn't need my prayers.   He did not need a friend.    What he really needed was to get out of this place and back with his girlfriend.

They had nothing in common.    Except that they were both dying.    And they both smoked.

At first, they ran into each other out on the back deck, the only place they were allowed to light up.

Joey started stopping by Jim's room when he was on his way out, to see if Jim was ready for a smoke break.   Eventually, Jim started stopping by to pick Joey up, too.

I never heard their conversations, if there were any.   But as Joey began to decline, I watched from a distance as Jim bundled him up, carefully wrapping a blanket around him and dressing him in his woolen hat, before pushing his wheelchair outside.  

We may not always realize it at the time, but all paths lead us to one another.


6 comments:

Barbara said...

Lovely.

Debbie said...

Touching scene in my mind. Thanks for sharing.

Kimberly said...

Stories like these need to be told....thanks

michelle said...

What a beautiful story. It is amazing what things can lead us to compassion, love and understanding with one another. Thank you for your kind and caring words and prayers as I am finding this myself.
I wish you love peace and joy in the new year.
Much love,
Michelle
xoxoxo

sue in mexico mo said...

What a great story! You have much talent for writing. Thanks for sharing.

Janet Bocciardi said...

Beautiful story. It must be wonderful to see these life changes before your eyes. I'm glad they had the time to connect.