Two men, both seriously ill, occupied the same hospital room. One man
was allowed to sit up in his bed for an hour each afternoon to help
drain the fluid from his lungs. His bed was next to the room’s only window.
The other man had to spend all his time flat on his back. The men
talked for hours on end. They spoke of their wives and families, their
homes, their jobs, their involvement in the military service, where they had
been on vacation.
Every afternoon when the man in the bed by the window could sit up, he
would pass the time by describing to his roommate all the things he
could see outside the window.

The man in the other bed began to live for those one hour periods where
his world would be broadened and enlivened by all the activity and
color of the world outside.

The window overlooked a park with a lovely lake. Ducks and swans played
on the water while children sailed their model boats. Young lovers
walked arm in arm amidst flowers of every color and a fine view of the city
skyline could be seen in the distance.

As the man by the window described all this in exquisite detail, the
man on the other side of the room would close his eyes and imagine the
picturesque scene.

One warm afternoon the man by the window described a parade passing by.

Although the other man couldn’t hear the band – he could see it in his
mind’s eye as the gentleman by the window portrayed it with descriptive
words.

Days and weeks passed.

One morning, the day nurse arrived to bring water for their baths, only
to find the lifeless body of the man by the window, who had died
peacefully in his sleep. She was saddened and called the hospital attendants
to take the body away.

As soon as it seemed appropriate, the other man asked if he could be
moved next to the window. The nurse was happy to make the switch, and
after making sure he was comfortable, she left him alone.

Slowly, painfully, he propped himself up on one elbow to take his first
look at the real world outside.

He strained to slowly turn to look out the window beside the bed.

It faced a blank wall. The man asked the nurse what could have
compelled his deceased roommate who had described such wonderful things outside
this window

the nurse responded that the man was blind and could not even see the
wall.

She said, “Perhaps he just wanted to encourage you.”

Epilogue:
There is tremendous happiness in making others happy, despite our own
situations.
Shared grief is half the sorrow, but happiness when shared, is doubled.

“Today is a gift, that’s why it is called the present.”

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