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A Letter of Timless Love
Dedicated to Sarah Youssefi
Submitted by Mike
A Letter Of Timeless Love and Compassion.
This is a story of heartfelt sympathy, understanding, frustration and extreme compassion.
It involves an incident, an encounter with Sarah and her grandmother Shirley.
It is centered around Sarah's mother and Shirley's daughter, Melissa, who had contracted stage 4 breast cancer a few months earlier. It took place in the kitchen of Melissa's home after school but before dinner. Melissa was hospitalized at the time undergoing a series of treatments for her serious condition. Everyone at that point was quite stressed out as one might expect.
It was about 5 p.m. Shirley was preparing dinner. Sarah has a medical condition that requires a special diet and they were discussing her evening meal. Something was said that set them both off. An argument ensued. Voices were raised. None of it was important and under most circumstances likely would never have occurred. But these were not normal times. Then the tears came. Each cried uncontrollably. Finally, Sarah ran off to her room still in tears. Shirley tried her best to control her tears by thinking of happier times when in Hawaii, and finally went to Sarah's room. Sarah was 6 years old at the time.
I went into the room having observed this very sensitive outburst. I wanted to be assured in my own mind that the situation had resolved itself. As I knocked and opened the door to Sarah's room, the scene I saw was enough to bring this proverbial old man to tears as well. There they were in each others arms, tears flowing freely. Without words, they were consoling each other in this time of grief. After a few seconds (that seemed like hours), they both in their minds realized that this had to be done, if not now, certainly later.
Again, without words, the tears stopped and Shirley left the bedroom to complete the dinner arrangements. Nothing was said. It was not necessary.
This mental exercise displayed an incredible amount of courage, sensitivity and compassion on the part of someone only 6 years old whose mother was extremely ill. What they did for each other will last for a lifetime. This situation will never be duplicated no matter what the future holds.
As it turned out, Melissa's cancer is in remission and has been for over 7 years. But, Sarah's memory of these early days of concern and care will never be forgotten.
Sarah grew up in those few moments, if only in spirit. She is a wonderful young lady and at 13, shows a maturity that is, I'm certain, due in part to those few minutes many years ago, in the kitchen and bedroom with her equally caring grandmother. A time that none of us will ever forget.
Mike (Paco) Peringer