CREDOS: The caregiver — III

Karen Kosman

The night before John’s surgery, Hannah came to visit. “Grandpa, Mommy said I could come see you in the hospital.” “Hannah, that makes me happy,” John replied as he hugged her. Early the next morning on our drive to the hospital, I notice a remarkable change in John’s physical and emotional state of being. A few hours later I sighed with relief as Dr. Jamison entered the waiting room, “John’s surgery went well. He’ll be in recovery for a while.”

The next day Hannah and Cathy came to visit. John, heavily medicated, slept unaware of their presence. My granddaughter’s eyes widened with curiosity as she looked at the IV and all the tubes hooked to her grandpa. With one hand on her hip and a little stuffed bunny under her other arm, “Grandma,” she finally said, “please put this bunny in bed with Grandpa. It’s my gift. I want him to know I was here.” Then she blew him a kiss. Placing a brownie ­covered with splashes of colored candies in my hand, she whispered, “This is for Grandpa, too.” Later John woke and immediately acknowledged the presence of his furry companion. “Hannah’s been here.”

Three years later, the bunny still has a place of honor in a basket next to John’s recliner. Daily the little brown bunny acts as a reminder of our granddaughter’s love. Hannah also maintains a place of honour...on her grandpa’s new knee. Hannah may be the smallest caregiver, but it’s the heart that counts — and Hannah’s compassionate heart is huge.