Sunday, August 7, 2011

The Urge to Love

Jane is up on the second floor, where folks are most challenged in their ability to communicate their needs. Jane also has a special friend, a small stuffed raccoon that she carries around. Yesterday, I stopped by and commented that this must be quite a special baby. "Yes, it is",  she said, and caressed it with much feeling. 

Real babies and children long gone, husband dead, friends scattered in various homes, other residents lost in their own world, the opportunities for Jane to love are scarce. Never mind, ever resourceful human spirit manages to get its needs met. 

"You love him very much, don't you?"  Jane turns to me and gazes at me deeply with her blue eyes and empathetically responds. "Yes, I do." and strokes her baby some more. Together we marvel at its sweet face. Does it have a name, I wonder? No, baby does not have a name, but Jane points to its glass eyes and black nose. She then puts him in its black pouch, and asks if  I want to hold it for a while. Very touched to be entrusted with such a precious bundle, I thank her. 

"I love you", she tells me. 

The need to love never goes away.


  1. Well that choked me up. Thank you for posting it. My mother kept a small stuffed animal with her when she was in a care home. I never gave it much thought before now. This has given me a new insight into who she was.

  2. Thank you for sharing, David. And I share your grief. It never ends, doesn't it?

  3. This reminds me of the poem by Hafiz:

    With That Moon Language

    Admit something.
    Everyone you see, you say to them, “Love me.”
    Of course you do not do this out loud, otherwise
    Someone would call the cops.
    Still though, think about this, this great pull in us to connect.
    Why not become the one who lives
    With a full moon in each eye that is always saying
    With that sweet moon language
    What every other eye
    In this world
    Is dying to hear?

  4. Thank you, Lori, for gift of this beautiful poem!

    Hafiz and Rumi, my two favorites . . .