I would like to welcome Jessica Lasa’s guest post. Let’s take a moment together to read as she shares a heartfelt real-life story about being a caregiver and a precious memorable patient “The Story of Hugh.”
This is just an everyday real life story. It’s a story of a man, like so many others I have, where I was taking care of patients, but actually, they gave me just as much as I gave them. Working as a caregiver, my back and feet hurt but my heart was full every day because of patients like this.
I had been working at a care facility for about three years when I met Hugh. By then, I had seen all types of patients. The loud ones, the mute ones, the inappropriate ones, the mean ones, but none of them were quite like Hugh.
Hugh came to us on the Transitional Care Unit; meaning he would transition home or to a long term care facility based on his progress in physical therapy. I did not make it a habit to read people’s charts because their diagnoses didn’t really matter. The nurses printed what we needed to know on a sheet of paper that was updated weekly. Important info on the sheet included transfer status (could they walk), toileting procedures and any dietary or fluid restrictions. They did not say, Hugh is a kind man and hilarious when he rarely opens his mouth, but I would soon discover this on my own.
Hugh was a tree trunk of a man, not fat or flabby, but thick from head to toe. He was a shorter man, but he could no longer walk and used a wheelchair. It was hard for him to get out of bed because, as you know, a tree trunk doesn’t bend well. I would get him up every morning and take him to the bathroom on the mechanical lift to dress and change him. I would politely explain what I was going to do and he never uttered a word, just nodded his fuzzy head once in reply.
I learned that he loved chocolate. He would get hot chocolate or chocolate pudding any time it was offered to him.
“You really like chocolate, don’t you, Hugh?” I asked as another CNA and I got him ready for an afternoon nap.
“Do you know what the best candy bar in the world is?” He asked us, as slow as molasses.
“No, what’s that?” Mercedes asked him.
“Uno candy bar.” He said with a smile.
Wow! That was an old one. We explained to him that we had never had one before but it sounded delicious. One day, the following week he silently waved us into his room where he gave us each an “Uno candy bar” that he had his family bring for us. I sat on his bed and enjoyed it as he watched smiling.
“Yes, Hugh! I think you are right. This is so good!!”
We took care of Hugh for months. And I only heard him speak a handful of times. Once after his bath, I was done dressing him and putting on his shoes and he said, “You have beautiful hands.”
“Thank you, so much.” I said.
“My wife had beautiful hands.” He said as my heart shattered in pieces.
For some reason, Hugh didn’t like to lie in bed much but he would fall asleep in his wheelchair every day watching TV. He liked the warm blankets but they didn’t stay warm long. I went to check on him and he was shivering.
“Do you want a warm blanket? You look cold, I’ll go get one!” and I ran out the door. I came back with the blanket and was wrapping him up, when he looked right at me and said, slow as molasses, “I’m shakin’ like a dog passing peach seeds.” And he grinned a little. A laughed so hard, I hadn’t heard that phrase from anyone but my dad and it absolutely made my day.
One time while Hugh was with us when the nurses decided we should put on a show for the residents. Each section of the care facility picked an old Elvis song and we took turns performing it in front of everyone. We wore Hawaiian shirts and leis and played pretend guitars while pretending to surf. I made sure that Hugh got a front row seat. We had to go back to work after our song but Hugh stayed there to watch the rest of the show. When another aide wheeled him back later I said, “There you are, Hugh!! Did you have some cake?” and he said with the biggest smile, “No, but I had a good time.” And it just melted my heart.
Hugh ended up going to the Long Term Care side of the facility and I ended up going on to pediatrics but Hugh will always go down as one of my favorite patients because he was so gentle and never said a word, unless it was something special.
You can enjoy more guest posts and heartfelt real life stories: “Heartfelt Moments” “Guest Blogger“
I hope you enjoyed reading Jessica’s guest post. Share how you this heartfelt real life story has encouraged you. Take a moment to checkout Jessica Lasa’s blog and all his socials.
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26 thoughts on “THE STORY OF HUGH: A HEARTFELT REAL LIFE STORY”
This was such a touching story, Natalie! It made it tear up. What a beautiful, important role you play in your patients life as a caregiver. Hugh sounds like a wonderful person. So amazing! Thanks for sharing!
Yes, Jessica sincerely made us the reader feel as though we knew a little about Hugh too from the experiences shared in this guest post. Thank you so much for reading and sharing this inspiring heartfelt real-life story.
Thank you for sharing this story, very heartfelt.
Thank you for taking a moment to read and sharing your comments on this real-life inspiring story.
This is such a beautifully written, heartwarming story Natalie. Thank you so much for sharing with us! You pay such an important role as a caregiver and I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for the amazing role you play in peoples lives. We would be lost without people like you! Xo
Elle – ellegracedeveson.com
Jessica did such an incredible job in sharing this heartfelt real-life guest post. She is to be respected. Thank you so much for reading and sharing your thoughts.
Wow, such a lovely story. It’s amazing how some people can make such an impact in our lives. Thank you for sharing!
Thank you so much for taking a moment to read and share your thoughts. You are right we each can touch someone’s life especially in care giving.
Thanks to everyone for reading and thank you so much Pastor Natalie for sharing my story!! Caregiving was the most fulfilling job I’ve ever had. ❤️❤️
You did such a great job sharing this very heartfelt story Jessica. It is an honor to have you guest write and inspire others.
Such a beautiful and thoughtful story! Touched my heart as seeing those I live in different stages of life.
Thank you so much for taking a moment to read and share your thoughts. It is touching to see the stages of life and how we each are touched by it.
A beautiful story. It crazy to think about how each of us can make such an impact on anyone’s lives.
I agree we each can be impactful to others. Thank you so much for reading and sharing your thoughts.
Wow this was such a heartfelt story. I actually teared up while reading this. You made such an impact on his life, I’m sure he will never forget you.
I appreciate you taking a moment to read and share your thoughts on Jessica’s heartfelt story. I sincerely agree it was very touching and he surely was impacted by Jessica.
Jessica’s story was an incredibly warm and open one. First of all, doing a job as she does is so noble and deserves all the respect. But how she describes her encounter with Hugh and shows the other side of the charts, is wonderful. I truly enjoyed reading it. It was beautifully written. Thank you
Thank you so much Benny for taking a moment to read guest post written by Jessica. Her heartfelt story is definitely beautifully written. I agree she is to be respected. I appreciate you sharing your thoughts.
Such a lovely story. You are such a kind person for sharing these moments.
Jessica did a great job sharing this guest post and it is a very precious story. Thank you so much for reading and sharing your thoughts.
Love how people can make such a positive impact on others. Such a heartwarming story, thank you so much for sharing!!
I appreciate you taking a moment to read and share your thoughts. I agree, it is wonderful when anyone is able to make an impact in a positive way on someone’s life.
Ok, I’ve always wondered why your blog has a name like this. And now I know. Amazing story!
Awww… thank you so much Fransic for your kind words. I really appreciate your support. Thank you for taking moments with me and sharing your thoughts.
Awe this is such a beautiful and heartfelt story for sure. Thanks so much for sharing it!
Thank you Charity for taking moments with me and sharing your thoughts on this real life guest post.