She has not long left in this world and yet she smiles when we walk in to the room as though we are exactly the people that she wants to see right here, right now. We know that seconds before we arrived she lay quietly, gathering and storing all her energy so in that moment when we enter she can sit up, alert and enquiring – our visit all about us and not about her.
Well dressed (though she has not been outside for weeks), make up on and not a hair out of place, she is ready for us, and with steely determination ready for whatever else will inevitably come her way.
In the midst of the adult conversation, steering an uneasy course between the future and the not too distant past, a little girl barely 18 months old runs in with a gift for her Nana… a small china pill box – a treasure found in the ‘good room’. Having delivered her present she runs off only to return again with the little lid of the little box. She offers her gift and smiles; love and praise are her reward.
Off she goes again and again until Nana has been reunited with all the little boxes and the little girl’s mission is complete. Contented she accepts the embrace that says so much more than words. She is too young to realise this world she knows will not last forever. But for now she reminds us that more often than not the little things in life are those that matter most.