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What Caregiving Taught Me

My family worked as a team to get through the hard times

Among the most rewarding moments of this journey came when Bill Cosby called. He and I are friends. I said I couldn't speak long, because I was with my mother in the hospital. He knew I was very close to my mom, and he asked about her condition and the name of the hospital. He was coming to D.C. the next week for a performance and said he would visit my mom.  

I got a call from the hospital Sunday morning about 7 o'clock, and he's already there. I could hear my mother cracking up in the background. I was a little worried, because the doctors had said not to let Mom exert too much energy because of her pulmonary hypertension.

I raced over to the hospital and found Bill holding court with all the doctors and the nurses. My mom is strapped in a chair (she couldn't walk) and she's laughing her head off. Just to see her smiling, laughing with Bill Cosby, after all that she had gone through, that was tremendous.

OK, Bill Cosby is famous. But that's not the point of that story. The point is that a friend made an extra effort to support my family during a difficult time. And it meant the world to us. The lesson is that, no matter how busy you get, always be a good friend and neighbor. Our society puts so much emphasis on things and money and status, but the important things in life still boil down to the type of person you are, the character you show when times are tough.

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