You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘unconditional love’ tag.

If you look closely, you’ll notice a cypress sapling growing within the fork of a city maple tree, the summer’s anomaly that caught the attention of a dear friend while walking her dog. Because she wanted larger exposure of her experience, she sent it on for my blog.

The genus of maple tree comes from the family Sapindaceae, with one hundred and twenty-eight species; while the cypress tree, from the family, Cupressus, with multiple species. Although an ardent lover of trees, I’ve never studied them. Still, the odds of two differing species sharing the sap of life, constitutes strange beauty that tingles the senses.

If you look even more closely, this photo also evidences Creator God’s handiwork, of which we are a minuscule part; it speaks more trenchantly than words, sourced from mystics that wobble in articulating the Unknowable, from whence comes LIFE—however we understand it.

Mystery surrounds us. It’s always been that way, apart from fleeting glimpses of the ordinary/extraordinary, cherished by my dear friend and shared with us. Such enrichment quickens our faith and trust as we continue trekking the next dark wood for more lessons.

And there will be more glimpses…

At 6 A.M., I awoke with this moving dream:

It is Christmas night. My niece Beth has invited me for supper with her extended family and friends who have already arrived. Candlelight enhances the vaulted ceiling of the living room, its walls decorated with red velvet cutouts of the Nativity. Among the guests, a soprano, with a swarthy complexion, begins a carol and Beth joins her; their harmony enhances the God-within-us mystery, so palpable this night. In awe, we listen.

This dream lightened my spirit. Christmas night evokes the solemnity of the Christ-birth, suggests the dynamic of Incarnation ever at work in the universe, and reminds me of my end-time slowly dripping like an ice sickle onto the earthen path below.

In Jungian terms, my niece Beth corresponds to my positive shadow: gifts that I do not see in myself that await discovery and development. Happily, some have surfaced, thanks to long months of solitude and prayer since the November 2019 diagnosis of my terminal illness: deeper access to words—building blocks afforded from the Sacred within; deeper appreciation for exactly the way my life has unfolded; and deeper acceptance of my mortality and anticipation for Eternal Life.

Within my psyche, the images of candlelight and the vaulted ceiling speak to the hush of Sacred space enveloping everyone: Hearts flare in communion. The red velvet cutouts of the Nativity seem to come alive, as Beth and her guest, with the swarthy complexion, sing the carol. Fresh awareness dawns: We are an integral part of this story, its wordless joy plunging us into sweetness.

We are loved, unconditionally.

I still remember that afternoon in the NICU as I watched the mother smiling through swollen-starved eyes and holding her brain-damaged daughter in her arms. Next to her stood her grandmother, my dear friend. Not much was said—just a loving presence, fresh tears feeding the grief and more hugs. That was in 2002.

When stable, the newborn would return home. Never was there mention of an institution to provide the 24/7 support she would require for the rest of her life: hands-on care and tube feedings that afforded nutrition and the medical management of her chronic seizures and cerebral palsy.

Years passed. Daily, she was fed, washed, dressed, and placed in her special chair in front of videos that seemed to spark something in her. Birthdays and holidays celebrated her smiling psyche, always in blessing toward others. Daily, she was kissed and blessed with holy water. Illnesses were infrequent.

However in 2018, a significant respiratory infection almost ended her life, save for the twenty-four hour intervention by her mother and grandmother in their home. In no time, she was back to her normal and remained so until the beginning of this month.

Again, she became gravely ill: more high fevers, intermittent seizures, and respiratory symptoms that required constant suctioning for over a week. Rather than send her to the hospital for treatment, they chose to work with her at home, as before. Given the impeccable care she has always received, no one could surmise the cause of these disorders.

Yet, two days ago, her old normalcy began to reappear. Spirits lifted, for a time. Only last evening’s brightness around her blue eyes evidenced something else was going on—something near the ceiling. Kissed and blessed with holy water as always, the grandmother retired for the night—but found her remains this morning.

Ellie, another angel, has returned to Precious God from whence she came. On April twenty-third, she would have been twenty-one years old. May we all learn from Ellie and her caregivers.

Available on Amazon

%d bloggers like this: