The Huffington Post Hayley Hudson First Posted: 02/09/13 EST Updated: 02/11/13 EST
True love and compassion aren't easy to ignore.
This week, a 24-year-old Redditor shared a letter received just after the death of his mother. The event, despite being difficult, brought an unexpected source of condolence -- a personal note from a physician who had never contacted a patient's family before.
"The letter was written for my father," he told The Huffington Post on Friday. "He stayed by her side until the very end."
The letter reads:
Dear Mr. (removed),
I am the Emergency Medicine physician who treated your wife Mrs (removed) last Sunday in the Emergency Department at (hospital). I learned only yesterday about her passing away and wanted to write to you to express my sadness. In my twenty years as a doctor in the Emergency Room, I have never written to a patient or a family member, as our encounters are typically hurried and do not always allow for more personal interaction.
However, in your case, I felt a special connection to your wife (removed), who was so engaging and cheerful in spite of her illness and trouble breathing. I was also touched by the fact that you seemed to be a very loving couple. You were highly supportive of her, asking the right questions with calm, care and concern. From my experience as a physician, I find that the love and support of a spouse or a family member is the most soothing gift, bringing peace and serenity to those critically ill.
I am sorry for your loss and I hope you can find comfort in the memory of your wife's great spirit and of your loving bond. My heartfelt condolences go out to you and your family.
According to the Redditor, his mother had breast cancer. A month ago, breathing difficulties landed her in the hospital, and 16 hours later, she passed away.
Surprisingly, the doctor who wrote the letter had never met or treated his mother until that day.
"If my mother were alive to see this, she would want readers to reflect on the power of showing compassion towards a total stranger," he told HuffPost.
"The support I got from Reddit was amazing -- doctors, nurses and other Redditors who have lost their mothers to cancer were all shocked and amazed that the doctor took the time to write such a heartfelt, meaningful letter," he added.