My dad died recently, of old age – 97 – and I was lucky enough to be with him for his final days. Through this experience, I have had a grand dose of the incredible kindness of other people.
I had loving support and kindness from friends and family, but also from the doctor, the district nurses – thanks to our NHS! – the funeral director, the minister who took the service for his funeral, his neighbours, the lovely lady who cleaned for him, and then those people who deal with all the paperwork and processes post-death.
Everyone I’ve encountered has been helpful, considerate and supportive, and between them they have made the whole business easier to deal with.
I am sometimes questioned on my belief in the essential goodness of human beings, but yet again I have been reminded of just how lovely people can be, and not just those closest to you, but also complete strangers who have no emotional attachment.
It gives me hope for our world in the midst of the noisy surface chaos and mess and lack of care, because lying just beneath that surface is compassion and warmth. When we relate to each other from our hearts, we remind each other that we may have created the mess, but we can also create the solutions between us, because we are essentially caring beings.
Yet again I am reminded to stay with my optimism that we can create a better world.