Jacob, an 11-year-old boy, lived with his parents in a trailer and experienced financial struggles since both of his parents earned minimum wage. During his parents’ working hours, Jacob would roam around his neighborhood, where he had many friends. One day, while playing with his friends near the property of an old woman who lived alone, Jacob noticed that her lights were consistently off, even at night.
“Have you noticed that Mrs. Jacobson’s lights have been off for a few days now? Do you think we should check on her?” Jacob asked his friends.
“That’s crazy, Jacob! Why would you walk into a dark and scary house? There might be ghosts in there,” one of his friends replied.
“Mrs. Jacobson doesn’t leave her house, and we haven’t seen anyone visiting her. Something terrible might have happened to her,” Jacob insisted.
“You’re out of your mind, Jacob. If you want to check on her, do it yourself. I’m not going anywhere near that scary house,” another friend responded, laughing.
Despite his friends’ warnings, Jacob approached the house and knocked on the door, but no one answered. He then noticed a letter at the foot of the door, which was a few days old.
Jacob hurried back to his friends and said, “Mrs. Jacobson hasn’t left her house for days. We need to get help!”
After seeing the old woman’s letter, Jacob ran back to his trailer and informed his parents. However, when he told his mom, she dismissed it and suggested that Mrs. Jacobson might be on vacation or visiting her son in New York, who was a well-known lawyer.
Jacob, being a clever boy, knew that Mrs. Jacobson’s son never visited her and doubted that she could travel alone to New York. He decided to use his mother’s cellphone to search for Adam’s number and called him.
“Hello, this is Attorney Adam Jacobson. How can I assist you?” answered a man on the other end of the line.
“Hi, Attorney Jacobson. This is Jacob from your neighborhood in Wisconsin. Is Mrs. Jacobson, your mother, there?” he asked.
“Hello, Jacob. No, I haven’t spoken to my mother in a month. Is everything all right?” Adam inquired.
“Well, I noticed that her lights have been off for a few days now, even at night. I wanted to check if you know anything about it. I want to make sure she’s okay,” Jacob replied.
“What? That’s impossible. She’s supposed to be home. Can you do me a favor, Jacob? Can you please check on her for me? There’s a spare key under the flowerpot by the door. I’ll take the next flight out of New York to get there,” Adam requested, suddenly worried about his mother.
Jacob and his mother decided to check on Mrs. Jacobson after Adam revealed that he had not spoken to her in a month. They rushed to her house and found the key.
Upon entering the house, they noticed that it was very cold, despite the heavy snow outside. Jacob called out to Mrs. Jacobson and heard a faint whisper for help coming from the living room. He and his mother quickly made their way to the source of the sound.
There, they found Mrs. Jacobson wrapped in a blanket on the couch, shivering. Jacob’s mother took off her coat and covered Mrs. Jacobson with it, instructing Jacob to fetch more blankets. They did everything they could to warm her up and offered her some food and drink.
Mrs. Jacobson appeared frail and weak, as though she had not eaten in days. Concerned, Jacob’s mother called 911, and an ambulance arrived to take Mrs. Jacobson to the hospital. Jacob and his mother accompanied her and kept Adam updated on her condition.
As soon as Mrs. Jacobson began feeling better, she expressed her gratitude to Jacob and his mother. “Thank you for saving my life,” she said.
She went on to explain, “I hadn’t eaten anything proper in a few days. When the electricity went out a couple of days ago, all I had to eat were biscuits and the juice I had left in my pantry. After a while, it got too cold inside, and I was so hungry that I couldn’t move. I ended up lying down on the couch, praying that someone would find me.”
Jacob’s mother was curious, “What about your son, Mrs. Jacobson? Why didn’t you call him?”
Mrs. Jacobson replied, “Well, I didn’t want to ask him for any money. I didn’t want him to think of me as a burden. I thought I could wait for my pension money to arrive at the end of the month, but I couldn’t make it without food. I was exhausted.”
Unbeknownst to them, Adam, Mrs. Jacobson’s son, had been standing by the door and overheard their conversation. He burst into tears and cried out, “Mom, you could have called me right away. I’m so sorry for not checking on you and for neglecting you.”
He continued, “I’ve been so busy with work that I completely ignored my responsibilities to you as a son. I’m sorry, mom. Please forgive me.”
Mrs. Jacobson comforted her son, saying, “Don’t worry, Adam. Jacob and his mom Annie helped me just in time. Because of them, I am alive,” she said with an appreciative but weak smile on her face, as she was still recuperating.
Adam turned to Jacob and his mother and expressed his gratitude, “Yes, and I will forever be grateful. Thank you for checking on my mother and for making sure she recovered. Thank you,” he said, looking at them straight in the eyes to show his sincerity.
Mrs. Jacobson spent a couple of days in the hospital, and when she was discharged, her son Adam took over her care. Before they left, he had something to tell her.
“Mom, you don’t have to be alone anymore. You’re coming to live with us in New York, where you’ll be happy and taken care of by me, my wife, and your grandchildren. We love you, and we’re sorry it took us so long to get you,” he declared.
Mrs. Jacobson was overwhelmed with emotion and couldn’t hold back her tears. Living near her loved ones was all she ever wanted, and she never thought it could happen.
“What about my house here?” she asked. While she didn’t want to be alone, the house had sentimental value to her as it was where she and her late husband raised Adam. She didn’t want it to be destroyed or sold.
“I had my assistant check on Jacob and his family. It turns out, they’ve been struggling and have been living in a trailer. I figured we could give them the house, and they could sell the trailer and use the money they earn for their everyday needs,” Adam proposed.
“That’s a great idea, sweetheart,” Mrs. Jacobson agreed, feeling grateful and happy that her son was not only taking care of her but also helping others in need.