It starts the moment I enter the house and two little girls come rushing toward me. Isabel, the “younger” one, misses me more than her sister and wraps her little arms around my neck, a tight squeeze. Last night the hug was accompanied by little kisses on my cheeks, then on my right shoulder, my right arm and then the gentlest kiss on my right hand. My wife burst into tears watching her display of affection. Our children and animals challenge us to live up to the unbounded love they feel and express.
Many of you in the Kabbalah Experience community know Karen Frankel’s dog Barley. She is featured in our video about Kabbalah Experience. This past week Barley had a seizure. She had been concealing cancer.
Barley has had a stream of distinguished guests offering her a final hug. She has been there for so many others; volunteering her time to sit with children in the hospital, calming them and brightening their days.
Barley is a part of our family. Eva and Isabel went to say goodbye to her. They hugged her as usual. Dog and girls sharing unbounded love.
Meditating last night on the last Chanukah candle as it took its last breath it became clear why we may lose that unbounded love. At some point we leave the unbounded time of the present moment and contemplate the last breath.
A few hours. Eight days. Fourteen years. The life of a Thanksgiving meal. A Chanukah. A dog’s life. It is like the kiss on a hand. A forever moment.