Member Monday: Aunt Shirlee’s Angel by Deborah Gilson

Welcome back to Member Monday!  Today we feature a piece by Writers Forum member Deborah Gilson.

Aunt Shirlee’s Angel

by Deborah Gilson

Cats are said to have nine lives. Humans have one, however, there’s one exception: my aunt Shirlee. She’s seen more lives in her near-85 years than any cat on GOD’s green earth.

The other night, I called at her resident’s home to catch up. She pleaded to have, “The good Lord take me home.” I said I honor her wish. She apologized she couldn’t wait any longer for my dreams to come true. She said it was taking too long for my loving man to enter my life. She said she was sorry my writing career didn’t happen while she was still alive. I told her I understood.

Aunt Shirlee fell a few days ago and ended up in the hospital again. This morning in honor of Valentine’s Day, I went to the hospital to see about cheering her up. The moment I walked into her hospital room she said, “Listen, Debbie. This hospital stuff is getting to be old news.”

We talked an hour and a half when she said with a glimmer in her eyes, “Oh, I almost forgot to tell you. The nicest nurse visited me this morning at ten past four. She turned on a light, just bright enough for me to see her and that clock on the wall. It wasn’t glaring, it was just right. When I asked if she was here to give me more medication, she said she was only here to visit.” I let Aunt Shirlee know that was an odd time for anyone to just pop in for a visit.

Aunt Shirlee explained this was no ordinary nurse. I said, “Oh? Tell me about her.” Aunt Shirlee began describing her special nurse saying, “Well, she had blonde, crinkly, wavy hair to her shoulders. I asked what hours she worked and the nurse explained, she’s here for me 24/7. Whenever I need her, she’ll know. She told me her workplace is immediately outside my door on the right. She said there’s a group of offices and hers is the closest to my room.”

My antenna was on high by now. I let Aunt Shirlee know there were no offices outside her hospital door, only more hospital rooms. She asked me to double-check. I poked my head outside the door, looked down the long corridor and saw only what I’d seen walking to her room upon my visit. Aunt Shirlee’s face was visibly perplexed.

At that moment, a male Hispanic janitor walked in to mop the floor and empty the waste basket. I thanked him for coming in and Aunt Shirlee asked him, “Excuse me, could you please tell me if there are any offices outside my room?” He said, “No, ma’am. There are only more hospital rooms.”

Aunt Shirlee asked with a curious look, “Debbie, who came to my room this morning?” I gently said, “Aunt Shirlee, that was an angel.” Aunt Shirlee paused a moment and then asked, “Why did she come see me?” I explained, “The angel knew you’d been feeling alone and she’s here to let you know whenever you need a friend, she will be here.” Aunt Shirlee replied, “Well, she sure was pretty.”

At that moment, my aunt Audrey called on Aunt Shirlee’s hospital phone. I knew it was time for me to leave. When Aunt Shirlee’s time is finished on earth, I’ll be at peace, knowing she has an angel guiding her home.

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