What's Love?

December 1, 2008
“What’s wrong with her?” I demanded as Me-Me, my great-grandma, lay in a hospital bed dying of cancer at the age of 94.

While she had beaten cancer before, I knew that this time her death was imminent. If my death had been forecast instead of Me-Me’s what would I want most? I’d want to know I was loved. I visited her as often as possible, but an hour drive and no car kept us physically apart. I resolved to write her a letter every week, not out of obligation, but out of love. These letters contained the things I’d been up to that week, school, sports, friends, and more school. I always signed my letters “love Kirsten, my family sends their love, and get well soon”. I couldn’t fathom that Me-Me would find any details of my monotonous life interesting. But she insisted that she loved hearing from me so I continued.

I wasn’t expecting what my mom brought me home after going through Me-Me’s possessions…all the letters I had written her. I couldn’t contain it anymore and I burst into tears. Not just because I was sad, but also because I knew what I’d done had made her life a little better.

She was one of the first deaths I had to actually cope with and it scared me how much I could love someone and then lose them. Me-Me was one of the first people I took time to care more about than myself. She taught me what love means.

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