The wheezing, coughing, and fever had become too much. There were no urgent cares back then, so the call went out in the middle of the night. The voice on the other end said, "Come on over."
So we went.
When we knocked on the door, he opened it, and said, “Just put her in there,” as he pointed to his left. So, my dad took me into the living room, laid me down, and stood by hoping something could be done. There I lay on the beautiful living room sofa feeling like a princess—albeit a sick one. The absolute best of the small town or any town doctors went to work. I had always gotten better before, and I had confidence I would again. Once more, we would triumph over the bronchitis.
Somewhere in this house, his wife was around. I never wondered then how many sick children she had welcomed into her home in the wee hours.
I do now. I imagine that kind of hospitality would never happen today. It’s a throw back to a different era, but one I am so grateful for. I also question how many physicians would have accommodated patients this way even back then.
I saw a familiar name pop up on social media a few years back. Could it possibly be the woman whose home I invaded?
The doctor’s wife and I began a new chapter of our relationship on social media.
The thing that has most struck me in her comments is that she always signs off with “I love you.”
I have since realized that love and her Christian faith shown in all she writes, was what was behind a woman welcoming a string of sick children into her home in the middle of the night—for decades. That was the reason she was willing to sacrifice her beautiful furniture in the hope her husband could help a feverish child. Her life was a life of service to her community, just as her husband's was.
So, today, I pay tribute to Dot. Thank you for all you’ve done for me and so many others who came knocking in the night. Thank you for loving us. Thank you for still being there with those affirmations of love and your bright faith. You continue to be an inspiration to us all to lead lives of service to others.
If you or your husband ever need anything in the night. Please—just knock.
And Dot, we love you, too.
“Let me give you a new command: Love one another. In the same way I loved you, you love one another. This is how everyone will recognize that you are my disciples—when they see the love you have for each other” (John 13:35 The Message).
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