Did you know that today is Saint Dwynwen’s Day? No? Really? Well, let me educate you for a moment! Dwynwen is the Welsh patron saint of Love and her story is a tale of true love.
Dwynwen was a woman who loved a prince called Maelon Dafodrill (cool name eh?) and wanted to marry him. As is often the way in these tales, her dad, the King said “no” as he had arranged someone else for her. In her anguish, she begged God to make her forget the aforementioned lover Maelon as she couldn’t bear life without him and luckily for her, an angel was promptly sent to help her. The angel gave her a magic potion that erased her memory but unfortunately had the side effect of turning Maelon into a block of ice. God then gave her three wishes; now if I had three wishes, I’m not sure I’d choose hers but each to their own eh! She wanted ……..
1. That good old Maelon should be thawed (phew, was worried for a minute…)
2. That God should give all lovers everywhere the happiness they desire. (awwww….)
3. That she would never love again. (what…..?)
Now, whilst our Dwynwen spent the rest of her life devoted to God and became the symbol of love in our country, on her day today, our thoughts turn to love and what all that ‘stuff’ means. What is love in these superficial days? It’s such a tricky concept but sometimes one thing happens and it all becomes clear. For some people, it’s the moment your partner catches your eye and smiles, when they bring you that cup of tea ‘just because’ or it’s when they do the most basic things with a smile just for you.
Today, I’ve had a sharp reminder of what it all means. It’s been a bad day and I’m lying on the bed trying to get a handle on today’s pain which has escalated after a “god, my hair’s really filthy, can you help me wash it” stupid moment. After an hours worth of struggling to get washed and trying to dry my crazy curls whilst in enormous pain due to the act of just wanting to be clean for a change, I am wiped out. Fed up. Miserable and angry. As I lie there, eyes closed, doing my breathing, trying to find my bloody ‘happy place’, and a voice says “come on George, up you get, there’s some leftover shortbread from Christmas here for you” (don’t ask me why the ‘George’, can’t work it out or maybe the drugs just made it sound like that?). I open my eyes and there’s another pair looking back at me giving me a cute little wink, there’s also a plate and my favourite mug there too. With a hand reaching out to help me sit up, I can see it; love isn’t diamonds or presents (although they’re also very nice….!) it’s exactly what it should be, someone there when you need them most and someone who cares about you.
After one or two (or maybe three) shortbread biscuits, my soul feels better, even if my body doesn’t. But one thing I do know is that he’ll be there again tomorrow and the next day, with the cups of tea, the biscuits and every other thing I need.
So thanks Dwynwen and Maelon on your special day. You remind us that love, in all its forms, is all around us, but sometimes we just have to open our eyes and see it……