It’s February, so let’s dive into the topic of love. Most of us are familiar with the Corinthians passage about love enduring all things, but you may not be as familiar with English author, playwright and 1932 Nobel Prize winner, John Galsworthy’s best known quote, “Love has no age, no limit; and no death.” That may have been a noble thought in 1930s England, but does it have relevance for those of us living in Mill Valley today. We believe it does and we don’t have to look far for some examples.
Last month’s edition featured The Redwoods, a place where there are examples of true, lasting and limitless love on display every day. Sometimes it is in a couple’s shared look or their clasped hands. It permeates through the tender touches between grandparent, parent, child and grandchild. It is often seen between a care provider and a resident, as well as the shared smiles with school children, interactions with supportive volunteers, connections with precious pets and the gentle, nurturing efforts with flowers, fruits and vegetables in the public and private gardens.
The residents love to share their passions as well. Whether on the street corner protesting, through sharing in a class or support group, or a quiet moment with someone who needs a little TLC. It is particularly nice to see when love blossoms amongst and between seniors, a not infrequent occurrence. Some residents find new and unexpected loves in their 80s and 90s, well after they thought that part of their lives was over. A few share pictures and stories from their youth of intense and fleeting love while others find solace in memories of a love that had a slower burn but lasted decades. No matter what the time or type they describe, they all share their stories with a sparkle that defies age and a joy that seems limitless.
As with anywhere, there is loss as well. Seasons come and go, so do cherished ones. The residents often talk about loved ones they have lost as if they are still very much with them. Through their stories it is clear that the deep love shared between two individuals – regardless of age, sexual orientation, cultural or religious backgrounds and interests – their love endures. It truly has no end, no death even if the other person is gone. It is celebrated and sustaining.
Now, after nearly two years of a pandemic, we could all use more love. So whether you are enjoying it with a special partner, envisioning it with a potential soul mate or reminiscing about a love long gone, here’s hoping you can learn from our senior neighbors and let yourself fall deeply into it, embrace it and enjoy that fact that love truly has no age, no limit and no death.