Somewhere in the middle of the forest stands a home for the strangers, the sick, the exhausted, the abandoned, the broken brimming with diverse stories to tell. An old man reliving moments of the young past, a terminally ill patient savoring the vivacity of dreams, an orphan perceiving life anew. In whatever background a person brings, whether dark or blemished, this home welcomes anyone who wishes to bathe in that soul-deep peace away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
If You Wish Upon Me (2022) introduces this place as the hospice hospital, treating patients and granting their final wishes by a team of dedicated workers and volunteers called Team Genie. Coming from each own’s stories of heartaches and regrets, empathy for people led them to listen to others and shower them the love they long for in the deep recesses of their hearts—What could make you smile for the last time? Who could make you smile for the last time?
This home may seem simple with ordinary people but they enliven joys of the heart from the little things that they do for others, which are often unnoticed amid a hectic world—food that brings balm to the body is served with warmth and thoughtfulness—words that awaken aspiration are conveyed with good intention—quality time that enkindles a person’s sense of being, lavished—and the pat, the touch, the embrace that hush the noise and calm the anxieties, unmasked.
Beyond the theme of death and granting final wishes, the drama seems to revolve around the often neglected part of humanity, that is human connections. It is when life nearly hits the bottom that life begins to discard chasing things and realize the intangibles of relationships and to unravel not what it wishes to do but who it wishes to connect with. Whether in person, in written form, or in any other way, life always has someone in mind it wishes to talk to during the final hours.
In reality, there may not be a place like that hospice hospital with a group of wish granters. But we always have a place for opportunities—the relationships around us. More than the last wishes, this drama reminds us to make time to unclutter our personal perspective of living—to rethink life, to rebuild human connections where life is grown and celebrated—to liberate us from the fears of unknown and regrets and begin to savor each moment and live each day more fully in such a way that we leave behind a worthwhile legacy.
Finally, looking at the drama’s main characters, they teach us that we miss so many valuable moments, large and small, when we are not willing to open the home of human connections within us.
The choice is up to us.
(Copyright) Myra Bansale for KORB Blog.
Genre: Slice of life
Synopsis: The story of patients and caregivers about life and death in a hospice hospital.
No of episodes: 16
Cast: Ji Chang-wook, Sung Dong-il, Choi Soo-young
Writer: Jo Ryeong-soo
Director: Kim Yong-wan
Network: KBS2, Viu
Date: August 10 to September 29, 2022