I’ve been having what therapists may characterize as ‘emotional breakthroughs’ since becoming ill. One of the most significant is about love. Not the impossibly romantic kind they depict in movies, but the kind where people embrace you warts and all and let you know that they care for and value you always. Because of my growing understanding of that kind of love I’m reconnecting with and growing relationships with people who I can’t imagine what my life would be like if I didn’t know them.
Some of them are people who, because of the complicated relationship with my mother, I always felt guilty having in my life. Not surprisingly, since I’ve been ill they are some of the people who have been most supportive, especially when it comes to the emotional support needed as I try to cope with the current conditions of my life. These people love me. They have always loved me. The love they have for me is not dictated by biology or obligation. They love me just because they do. And I love them in return not because there is anything tangible for me to gain; not because I feel that I must reciprocate, but simply because I do.
My recognition that this love exists is changing me. It’s opening me. It’s making me feel positive even as I endure the pain of my illness. This love makes me feel less alone as I live every day in my small space because I know that I am not living through all of this alone. Most importantly, as cliché as it sounds, I now know the true meaning of the phrase “go where love grows”, and I hope others can experience this growth.
Edison Lighthouse – Love Grows Where My Rosemary Goes