Get Her to the Hospital!

Gayle Y. Brandvold, California, USA

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    woman praying

    Illustration by Katie Payne

    I was single and self-employed when I was new in the Church, so I had days when I had extra time. On one of those days I called the Relief Society president and asked if anyone needed help that afternoon. She mentioned an elderly sister named Anita (name has been changed) who had recently come home from the hospital and was lonely. I had met Anita before and was happy to visit her.

    I called and then went to her apartment. She asked me to make lunch for her, and afterward we had a great visit. She had a good sense of humor and loved to laugh and tell stories about her life.

    After lunch she said she was tired and asked me to help her from her wheelchair to bed. Soon I had her tucked in. Suddenly, the still, small voice I had heard so much about spoke to me: “Get her to the hospital now!”

    Anita hated hospitals and had just returned home. I asked her if she felt OK. She said she was fine but felt tired.

    I moved away from her bedside and knelt. As soon as I started to pray, the voice repeated, “Get her to the hospital, and get her there now!”

    I hesitated, asking myself, “What am I going to tell the doctor at the hospital?”

    I called a friend, who also prayed and then told me to follow my prompting.

    Anita was angry that I would even mention taking her to the hospital, but I called an ambulance anyway. When it arrived, two paramedics entered and took her vital signs. Without asking questions, they put her on a gurney and sped off in the ambulance.

    I followed in my van. After arriving at the hospital, I sat and waited. Soon a doctor came out. He asked me, “She didn’t tell you that she had fallen before you came to her apartment, did she?”

    “No,” I responded.

    He told me that Anita had injured her spleen and was bleeding internally. Without immediate medical attention, he said, she might have died.

    I felt a mixture of remorse and exultation—remorse that I had hesitated and exultation that ultimately I had listened to the Holy Ghost. Most of all, I felt grateful to know that the Lord had trusted me to help this injured sister and had inspired my Relief Society president to send me to her.

    My own health has deteriorated since this experience, but the Lord still prompts me. I pray always for the strength to follow those promptings.

    Anita said she felt fine, but I moved away from her bedside, knelt, and prayed.

    Illustration by Katie Payne