A Letter To Tina In The Hospital Canteen

Kindness Blog

Evening approached swiftly on the shortest day of the year.

The hospital restaurant was nearing closing time as I heaved open the door and shoved the pushchair through. The canteen was deserted, and you were just finishing, putting chairs up on to tables. No doubt you groaned at the sight of a last-minute customer.

Working there, you must have witnessed so many aspects of human life. Clinic-appointment coffee, visiting-time tea, escapees from the ward looking for “normality”, people coming to terms with diagnoses, difficult decisions to make; sorrows, hopes, occasional joys.

I was living at the hospital with my six-month-old twin girls, the younger of whom was at that moment in theatre, in the hands of an amazing surgeon who was mending the hole in her heart.

Negotiating tiny cavities, stitching minute sutures, it felt as though he had literally taken her precious life into his hands. My cousin’s daughter…

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