What would you do to comfort a sick friend?

Aside from the usual bouquet of flowers and basket of fruits, I'd like to hear your suggestions, especially from patients, as you would know from your end what cheers up a sick person. A sort of "do unto others as you would have them do to you" affair.

Example, I'd run errands for a sick friend.

Ask them** kinda 3 wishes? Is there anything you need, or want? For me it's often the silliest things... a book review I read in the paper, could someone track down the book and buy me a copy? Speaks to the running errands suggestions. Or maybe even drive me for a Salon haircut? All the little endless things we did for ourselves, so effortlessly before, now become strategic acts!

Nice one, Nicole!

A friend of mine knows I love Dr. Seuss, so she bought me a pair of Dr. Seuss pajama bottoms to take to the hospital.

I didn't want to talk on the phone after surgery, so friends & family filled my facebook page with good wishes & my husband read them to me.

My asst. principal had a double masectomy a couple of months ago. The members of the English dept. took turns making meals for her family that her 13 year-old daughter could reheat.

Those are very sweet suggestions, A. Collins! I'll include those in my write-ups.

Listen and give a book or something of open-ended quotes or question "nuggets" of life.

...and spa-type of stuff - calming CD, smell-good massage oil, loofa - maybe some personal cleaning items based on ability...waterless shampoo, etc.

Wow! Yes, some patients seem to have forgone how pampering oneself can bring a touch of normalcy, even hygiene, when sickness strikes. Thanks for bringing that up, Julie.

Hi again Armando - I read this quote by Oprah yesterday. I usually agree with her perspective; I still do, in this case, but I definitely would pair this with something tangible:

"There is no greater gift you can give or receive than to honor your calling. It's why you were born and how you become most truly alive." - Oprah Winfrey

How can I agree any less? It is really in dedicating ourselves to a worthy cause that we are able to give to others exponentially. Thanks for sharing that Julie. Truly appreciate it.

Just turn up!
You've got a lovely smile that will work wonders in itself.
Wear bright clothes. Colour can be uplifting.

I received flowers, edible fruit arrangements, coloring book and crayons, toys and my favorite cookies from my old neighborhood bakery whic is 30 mins from where I now live. My favorites have been prepared meals so that my husband or boys ages 20 and 18 did have to worry about making dinner while helping take care of me.

I am a big Facebook user so seeing all the posts from all my friends meant so much to me. I also have pictures from the day of my stroke on 4/20 until now to watch my progress which others have liked to see how well I am doing.

My favorite gift was my friends created a video of pictures of all my friends and family for me. I laughed and cried because it meant the world to me!

That sounds good!
Have you checked out our FB page? Ben'f Friends Patient Communities. We've reached a 1000 likes last month and closing in on our second thousand in this month!

Just be there and listen!

Knowing what the receiver wants! sound practical. Thanks Ninibeth!

My daughter was in the rehab hospital for 6 months after her avm ruptured (at age 18.) She also had 30+ surgeries before and after the avm rupture, so we've had LOTS of experience with hospitals and at home illness and recovery. Some of the things that cheered her up:
•DVDs, and friends staying to watch the movies with her
•DVDs for her to watch on her own (usually just lent to her by friends...no reason to buy new ones)
•Foot rubs
•Manicures and pedicures
•People bringing their dogs to visit (they would bring them to an outside park area of the hospital.)
•Friends coming to read to her
•Posters made by the church youth group
•Visits from friends

Things that helped me and my husband (I spent all day and 4 nights per week with her; my husband spent evenings, weekends and 3 nights a week with her while she was in rehab; plus me being with her most of her waking hours, and plenty of overnights, during other hospitalizations):
•meals prepared and delivered to our house by friends
•friends bringing meals to the hospital and staying and eating with us in the cafeteria (the hospitals didn't mind)
•being taken out to dinner
•help with yard work
•help with housework
•help with errands
•a friend taking me out to the ballet
•visits from our friends; our daughter enjoyed those visits as well
•people asking us what things we might want or need them to do for or bring to us

I hope these ideas help.

Wow! That was a handful! Wait till the other communities get wind of this. Thank you!

Have a conversation with me like im still part of the outside world.
Just having the courage to not pitty when speaking to me. Most everyone
Can’t get past the prayers and wanting to help. As much as help is wanted
And needed at times. Its nice to have a visitor once and a while who is not
There to help or fill your ear with prayers. Although help and prayer are nessary
We used to be normal and crave normal visitors who look past our deficiantly
And include us in the real world. So it seems like were not there obligatory
Half hour of charity.

During my stay(s) in the hospital I received 3 things that I appreciated the most (aside from a photo of my son someone actually thought to bring me without me having to ask) was a care package full of snacks lol. It was great! There was nutri-grain bars, apples, beef jerky and a bag of hot fries:) The second was a basket with a stand-up mirror/tweezers, shampoo/conditioner, body wash and deo. (the hospital had decent powder LOL) The last thing, which I was too old to enjoy but enjoyed it anyway, was a purple unicorn pillow pet my mom brought me! It was the best and on more than one occasion I woke up cuddling it with a nurse or Dr. standing over me smiling LOL