I learned what pure unconditional love is, one day of December, the year 2009, and this little lesson continues to grow in significance, every single day, every single time I give it some thought.
At that time, my grandpa had been fighting cancer for more than 5 years, of which he spent quite a bit in hospitals, having surgery after surgery and treatment after treatment. For their entire married life, my grandparents shared everything, supporting each other and encouraging each other to overcome every obstacle and to achieve every dreams. Each day of the 45 years spent together, my grandma made sure that her husband would have breakfast ready to eat in the morning and a nutritious lunch packed to take with him to work.
This, of course, didn’t stop during the times my grandpa was in the hospital, having his cancer treatment. Every morning, my granny was waking up, making breakfast, taking it to the hospital in hope that, despite his lack of appetite, my grandpa would have at least a bite to eat, then coming back home and planning an elaborate, irresistible lunch, that she cooked and then took back to the hospital, restless in her attempts to make sure that my grandpa would be well fed, in his time of sickness.
One afternoon, exhausted from having run around the entire day, my granny asked me and my sister to take lunch to the hospital in her place. As soon as we entered the hospital, this pungent smell of sickness and medicines struck us. We found my grandpa’s room, but he wasn’t there. Instead, his bed-sheet was stained with drops of blood, probably due to the fact that his IV had been replaced.
After a couple of minutes, my grandpa enters the room. Weak, livid, barely managing to carry his own weight, exhausted by this merciless disease, staring at his feet. One of his roommates told him “Hey, look, you have visitors”, at which moment my grandpa lifted his head, and when he saw us, his eyes lit up, coming to life in a bright and loving smile, a smile so sweet and kind and deep that it left a mark on the very core of my soul, and said “Grandpa’s girls, I could eat you both!”… My grandpa, my role model of strength and resilience, gathered all of his remaining strength, and dedicated it entirely to showing us how much he loved us.
This image has haunted me over the years, and today, more than 9 years after his passage to the after world, I believe the time has finally come to pay the well-deserved respect and commemorate the moment I first experienced divine love, manifested through the light of love on my grandpa’s face. And suddenly, it dawned on me that we only perceive and understand things that also exist within us, that we can recognize in our own emotional and spiritual DNA. And I felt light…
Two years ago, I discovered another form of unconditional love, which up to this day, is teaching me to surrender, to let go of ego, to let go of expectations and to allow my soul to be nourished, replenished by the love I feel for this beautiful person, whose smile, pure and sweet, reminded me of childhood, whose hug, warm and tight, touched my soul and brought me back home, back to safety, back to myself. But that, my fellow friend, is a story for another time… Until then, may you be blessed by the infinite, freeing, comforting light of love, wherever you may be!