All love ever needs.Posted: November 30, 2013
This is my Dad, showing his granddaughter Laxmi how his cane works.
Holidays are holidays. Joy and love commingle with frustration and impatience. This is the way of intimacy. Nothing to worry about.
This week, I kept thinking about a passage from the eulogy my Dad wrote for my Mom. He took care of her for many years as her illness made her increasingly more debilitated. And now, I’m caring for Dad in a similar way…as Pam does, as we all do; as Dad takes care of me, as we all take care of each other, imperfectly, sometimes with more grace and sometimes with less. And it’s all okay.
“When we had done everything we could for her, and nothing seemed to work any more and a sense of futility set in, it began to dawn on me that the only thing left to do was the most important thing I could ever have done all our life together: to be present for her and with her. Not to change or cure her, but to let her be, and let myself and our children be, with her. After all our years of marriage and being a family, I began to realize that this is all love ever needed or needs: being present for one another. This was enormously liberating, and her gift of peace. I wish I had learned it sooner; I hope I will never forget it.”
—Donald E. Byrne Jr.
St. Paul the Apostle Parish
August 22, 2001