Some Stories Demand to Be Told - Karen Oliver

Some stories demand to be told and some stories never will be. Everyone wants to read the exciting, dramatic story, spotlights shining. Most of the heroic stories are subtle though and it takes a great storyteller to show them off. Take the story of Dick, for instance. Ninety years old and finally living in sin with the woman he fell in love with in his teens. He comes to breakfast at her house in the morning wearing his tuxedo pants with the suspenders hanging at his side and a grin on his face. For a few years they live together but he becomes more and more feeble until he fell and broke his hip. Nursing home, cannot walk, probable pneumonia, the common scenario. His girlfriend, Mary, says that he doesn’t want to come home. He needs the security of the staff at the hospital.

Visiting him is sad. It is obvious that the number of physical things going on can only be reversed with a lot of effort that no one, including Dick, wants to exert. There was a moment though, when he talks about Mary. He pauses, looks away and very clearly says, “She is a wonderful woman” in the softest voice. That’s when I see the heroism. He does want to go home but will not, for her sake.