On Saturday, an elderly woman collapsed outside my house. Benn came in and told me; I put on my sandals and went to her. At the same time, a lady with a little girl also came up to her, calling an ambulance.
I froze- I couldn’t remember what to do. So I tried to help in a way I could. I stroked the lady’s hair and calmed her. She was sort of fitting and trying to maintain consciousness. The other lady and I did as we were instructed by 999 and put her in the recovery position. All the time, I kept trying to talk and calm the lady. It was very scary, she had a serious head wound and was losing consciousness. I stayed with her until the ambulance came and I cleaned the pavement of her blood after she’d left (the paramedics asked me to. It also sort of felt respectful, if that makes sense?) Thankfully, the lady is comfortable in hospital and doing well.
What impressed me was how the people around the situation sprung into action- one man ran to the lady’s house to inform her family (we found her address in her bag); a couple looked after the little girl who was beside herself with shock; a bus driver stopped her bus and directed traffic around the ambulances- two turned up- to allow the emergency services to do their job. The paramedics were AMAZING. I have no idea how they remain so calm at such difficult times. The lady who had been on the phone visited the lady’s family to see how she was doing.
All of these people gave up their time to help someone in need. They could have walked past, or crossed the road, or avoided the area. Instead, they stayed for up to an hour to help.
We’re now into the season of goodwill and it’s made me think- how can we demonstrate this in small ways? What random acts of kindness can I do to brighten someone else’s day? How can I help my friends and family? We get so wrapped up in Black Friday and presents and stuff, but how often do we do something selflessly for others?
Also- I really, really need to refresh my first aid skills. So I’ve added a resolution to my list for 2015.
One thought on “The kindness of strangers”
This is so lovely it’s made me a little weepy, what lovely people you all are.
It also reminds me I’d like to brush up on my first aid skills as well, I’m not sure i’ve done so since school.