She was always very special. Her warm smile could change your life in an instant. A halo of light embraced her every move. That was my Grandmother, who passed away several years ago, leaving a trace of Greatness in her wake.
A week or so ago, I felt a strong urge to create an illustration of my late Grandmother. I know that she is looking down on me from her special place in Heaven. Before she passed away, I didn’t really believe in Heaven. But after she was gone, I could feel she was mentoring me on – like she always did – whenever I faced one of life’s challenging situations.
That veil between this life and the afterlife was no longer a thick wall. Because of my love for her and her love for me, it was just a mysterious veil that became a lot thinner with the power of Love.
Love. That’s what distinguishes us from one another as people.
I have met people with thick hearts like stone. Cruel, heartless, and dominating, these people were nothing like my Grandmother. They had status, educational credentials from academic giants like Harvard, and a name among leaders in their field of expertise. But they had no heart. Which taught me that no amount of status, money, or even external beauty, can ever compensate for lack of Heart.
My Grandmother had no status. She was a housewife hidden in her own little Kingdom. But She had wide-reaching influence because of her legendary kindness, deep wisdom, and uniquely crafted character.
She never gossiped, never picked on someone, and was very very accommodating of other people’s failings. Whenever I was annoyed by someone’s shortcomings, she used to tell me that what I don’t like in that person is actually mirroring back to me a shortcoming within myself, that I needed to work on and improve.
She taught me that pointing fingers at other people was counter-productive, because we all see what is within us. So if we see ugliness, that is because we have ugliness within our souls. And if we see beauty, then that is also because we have beauty inside our hearts.
Because of her, I have learnt that the myth about the Power of Love is very real. It’s a universal force that can transform us into better people, which will in turn transform the world.
And as an illustrator, I have been dreading the day I needed to expand my portfolio to include an illustration of people and personalities. I used to feel it was such a difficult task, until one day, my Grandmother’s love helped me overcome my fear. It helped me come up with my first-ever People/Portraits Illustration… and of course, it is of my Grandmother!