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Mom very ill. Poem

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Mom is very sick again. She has congestive heart failure and her heart is just not pumping right. The hospice RNs advised my sister to track me down on my ski vacation and let me know her time is limited. I have packed the car and am leaving for her nursing home in California. I had already written this blog and not posted it, when I finished a project to collect and print (in BIG print so she could read them) all her poems. So I am posting because I thought some of you would enjoy reading her very perceptive thoughts on aging.

She is 93 and funny and witty. She wrote this poem for us on the occasion of her 90th birthday party. She was writing poetry until about 6 months ago.

The Bad News and the Good News—May 29, 2009

Amid the birthday greetings, the laughter, the levity,
I hate to warn of the woes of chronic longevity.
Since chronologically speaking, you’ve miles yet to go,
And the dismal details you’d maybe rather not know.
But “tempus” does “fugit” so you should be aware
Of the physiological pitfalls that lie in wait for you there!

I’ve encountered things lately I haven’t enjoyed,
Certain medical malfunctions you should try to avoid—
The memory grows shaky, joints constantly crumble,
Newsprint grows smaller, other folk always mumble.
Chins and wrinkles increase, so alas, does the derriere;
Various parts that are sagging make the silhouette scarier.
And though the wish for each day may remain, “Carpe diem!”,
Now the prayer for each night is “Take the ‘pee’ out of p.m.!”

I’ve listed the items that evoke my invective,
But don’t be dismayed by my glum retrospective,
Because the rough, bumpy road to being this old
Is surprisingly frequently paved with gold!
You can still smell the flowers along the way;
You can fall asleep guilt-free any hour of the day.
You’re no longer expected to join a committee,
Or attend social functions and be lively and witty.
The faltering memory will excuse you from blame
Each time you forget your best friend’s first name.
You can bypass the broccoli, spurn the spinach, and then you
Can unabashedly work through the dessert end of the menu.
You don’t have to finish every book that you start;
All the folk you love dearly grow nearer your heart.

So enjoy the “wine” and the “roses” and “seize the day”!
May life shower you with blessings along the way.
You’ve been the light of my life for all of your years;
I’ve rejoiced in your laughter, when you wept I shed tears.
Always remember when the time comes to part,
That heaven for me is being held in your heart.

(Poem by Alihike’s mother)

Pray for her that her passing will be peaceful and pain free. She has refused treatment other than palliative care.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    You should have those published-that was beautiful and funny too! Sounds like a smart, very nice lady-she has lived a long, wonderful life! My thoughts are with you and your family Ali! Take care.... emoticon emoticon
    1368 days ago
    What a great, insightful Poem! Her spirit shines through!
    I am sure, her love of life has helped shape the person you are!

    If this is her time to pass, may it be with the love and dignity she certainly deserves!

    emoticon emoticon
    1370 days ago
  • DOODIE59
    Hello Alihikes,
    I saw "poem" and was curious as to what your mother would write. What a delightful outlook on life, and what a joyous sense of humour. A lovely, strong personality shows through those words. I pray she is at peace and you will get your chance to say goodbye.
    1370 days ago
    Tears in my eyes reading this. Big hug.
    1370 days ago
  • DR1939
    1370 days ago
    Thank you so much for sharing this very special poem with us. I am thinking of you and of her at this difficult time.
    1370 days ago
    I send you prayers and hugs at this most difficult time. Thank you for sharing a bit of your sweet mother with us.


    1370 days ago
    Your mother sounds like a wonderful woman, Alison. My prayers are with her, you and your whole family. She has had a long life, and you have been very attentive to her needs. I know this is a difficult time for all of you. Take care,
    Gail emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1370 days ago
    What a great funny poem! Take care and best wishes for you and your family.
    1371 days ago
  • MARTY728
    1371 days ago
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