At the end of our life, we lose function of our bodies as we have known them. We lose we our basic motor functions. We lose our ability to communicate like we have known, and we lose our ability to interact with the world the only way we have known how. Our society has put bountiful amounts of importance on verbal communication, we’re mad when someone doesn’t understand us, when we’re inconvenienced by someone else’s cultural backgrounds and can’t communicate clearly, or aren’t understood or understanding someone else. Language is an exceptionally powerful tool, and as a writer, a healer, an analytical being, and mostly, a talker, I myself love the power of words. Yet as time goes on, we completely lose this skill, we return back to younger ages of development, and eventually we also love our movement, and control of the most basic of functions.
So if everything we learn, if our communication, the main tool we use for connection, our ability to hug one another, our memories fade away with time, all that we are left with in our final days is our love. We’re left with love.
As I sat at the bedside table of my dying grandmother, I felt the light pitter patter of her heart beating, and the small, and the soft inhales and exhales of her body moving. Every few minutes she would open her eyes, sometimes it would be soft, but mostly it would be a full body jolt as she opened her eyes only to see that she was still on this earth.
When she would look at me, every now and then I’d see, feel a recognition cross over her face. I held her hand lovingly between both of mine, and would tell her how much I loved her. My grandma, like most people I suppose, never liked talking about death, she never liked accepting her aging self, so we never talked much about what would happen next, we always just enjoyed the moments we had together. As I sat there, I wanted to tell her how wonderful our life had been together, how much better my life has been because she’s been in it. But I don’t, she wouldn’t want to hear that, it was too much of an acceptance of what was happening next. So instead I just tell her I love her.
LOVE, when the word leaves my mouth I swear I could see her comprehending it, and ever so slightly, she squeezed my hand. We sit there looking at one another for another few moments before her eyes drift closed again, a heavy breathe escaping her lips telling me that she’s fallen back asleep, she’s gone back to the other world.
She’s happy in this other world I tell myself, she’s with grandpa now, she’s with her best friend Eleanor. I wonder if they’re holding each other, smiling, laughing, happy to be together again. I look at my grandma breathing in this world but drifted into the other, and think about how small she looks. This whole life my grandma has lived. Married for more than 60 years to a man who was in the War, a man she didn’t love as she walked down the aisle, yet grew to love more than life itself. A family history filled with anti-semitism, pain, the great depression.Two grown kids, five grandchildren. So much happened in her lifetime, so much love, loss, happiness, and growth. So much to worry about in the day-to-day of life, and so much to do, yet here she is, lying in this bed at the end of it all, crossing between two worlds and all that really matters is love.
The only word she responds to is when I tell her I love her. The only thing that matters in her days are the visits from the people she loved, the people that love her. The only thing she is left with is the language of love, the love in her big, beautiful heart, and the love she is leaving this world, and entering the next with.
So, life through love.
Let it all be.
Let it all go.
Let love thrive.
Chase your dreams driven by love.
Break through the fear with unconditional love.
Heal with love.
Feel uninhibiting fear and let love reign.
All that matters is love.
So may you life through love in every moment of everyday.