Last year, Julie Bick’s dad was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. With the diagnosis coming only one year after her mother died, the news was a devastating blow.
But this time, Julie told herself she would do whatever it took to make the most of her time left with her father.
“I never was able to spend much time with my mother as her passing was sudden,” she told Love What Matters. “I let life get in the way of making time for my mother and I refuse to let life get in the way of me spending these last moments with my father.”
The single mother of two decided to move in with her dad in order to tend to his increasing needs as his memory slowly began to fail him. It was painful to watch her father’s condition get worse, as Julie was forced to take away his truck keys, and stop him from doing everyday things like mowing the lawn and taking his medications.
But she began to find peace in the little things — the moments that would light up her dad’s eyes with pure joy, like getting to see their garbageman, Harold.
“He knows my dad has Alzheimer’s and says hi to him every week and asks how he is doing,” writes Julie. “This morning, dad asked me to take a chair out to the curb because he wanted to talk to Harold. I helped dad get a chair out.”
She stood with him until Harold arrived. Soon after, she noticed her dad in tears:
“Dad starts crying and asks for me to walk away. I ask why, and he says, ‘Harold is a good man. He is religious, and I want to pray with him for you.’ It breaks my heart, I had to walk away.”
The beautiful moment shed some real perspective for Julie on her dad’s disease:
“I remember thinking to myself as I was walking back to the porch that no matter what disease my father has, it will never take away his love for me. I’m trying everything in my power to stop the tears and gain my composure. Then I look back and see Harold on his knees next to my father sitting in the chair, and there was no stopping the crying at this point.”
What amazed Jullie most was seeing someone who was practically a stranger have such patience and compassion for her ailing father:
“Although we have had Harold as our garbage man for many, many years, he truly doesn’t know us. He knows my father has Alzheimer’s and knows we are friendly people that talk to him weekly, but he doesn’t know us. This stranger is on his knees praying with my father for me. I’m at an ugly but happy cry at this point. I’m simply at a loss for words and think to myself, ‘I have to take a picture to capture this beautiful moment.’ This simple act of kindness has touched me so much. Harold has touched my heart and I knew I had to share this with friends and family on Facebook. I did, and many asked me to please make the post public so they can share it. I have and this single post has reached thousands. There is so much good in this world, and it starts with simple acts of kindness. Harold, thank you for your kindness and prayers. I will never forget this moment.”
Please SHARE Harold’s heartwarming act of kindness with the people you love today. A little compassion goes a long way.