Sunday, July 17, 2011

For some reason the first part of this poem has been on my mind for most of the day.  Maybe because it makes me smile and think of my mother in her heyday...

I knew a woman, lovely in her bones,
When small birds sighed, she would sigh back at them;
Ah, when she moved, she moved more ways than one:
The shapes a bright container can contain!
Of her choice virtues only gods should speak,
Or English poets who grew up on Greek
(I'd have them sing in chorus, cheek to cheek.)


 There's more to the poem, and I love it for all sorts of reasons, but that part just reminds me of her for some reason.


Today, started out a bit roughly for her, as she woke with a fair amount of discomfort.  The nurses prompt attention to the pain meds helped a lot and made her comfortable.  Of course I woke up with her and could only rub her back and gently brush her hair from her forehead.  That terrible feeling of helplessness is not usually a great start to the day.

With T gone back to Greece (well, still in transit this morning our time) middle son came for a fairly early  breakfast (just after mom was settled down and comfortable) bearing fresh croissants.  Discussions ebbed and flowed and gently touched on decisions for "afterwards".

As per her wishes we needed to look into cremation- a subject fraught with landmines and potholes for the unwary or unprepared. We opted to go with the place that gave us the most information (and provided - on request- a detailed price list of optional services!  They also broke down what the law required and what you could provide instead of their optional somewhat expensive products.)

Still, in a cheerfully macabre sort of way, their motto "Think outside the box" did get an inadvertent chuckle out of me.

Youngest son arrived shortly before noon and handed me the keys to the family car and told me to go do my laundry, take a long hot shower, have lunch and take a nap.

So I went back to my mother's apartment and did my laundry, raided the freezer (Stouffer's is WA-ay better than the hospital cafeteria!) and had a delicious glass of pinot grigio that had been conveniently left in the fridge.  I took my shower and managed a bit of a doze, though not a full scale nap, while waiting for the dryer to finish, instead of sleep, I opted to talk to my oldest son in Michigan, and then T in Greece just before he was going to collapse in bed after his long trip home.  I also touched base with both other sons, so I felt well rounded.

Of course, spending most of the day in my mother's apartment reminded me of her everywhere I looked.  I had been living with her before she checked into the hospital, so all my stuff is still there.

Still it was better to remember her tottering about in her apartment (forgetting her cane whenever she went from one room to the next), than to see her in the hospital bed every day.

What can you do?

I got back to the hospital at around 5:30 and felt refreshed and ready to continue on,

as one must;
as one does.


  1. You are writing a very beautiful blog of your time now which you will look back on and be filled with comfort at some unimaginable time in the future.

    Via this stange blogland I send you sympathy and strength.

  2. Lovely poem and a lovely post.. I hope that you are ok .. sending lots of cyber hugs xx

  3. Dear Rosie, Thank you so much for your note. I felt really strange at first starting to write about this process, for want of a better word. But sitting for hours next to her bed, I found myself sometimes overwhelmed with memories and thoughts and seemingly no where to go with them.

    It's odd writing things so personal and private in such an open virtual world, and yet I get an enormous amount of peace doing it. Thank you so much for your good wishes. (I get lots of good peaceful feelings from that too!)

    Dear Ruth, Thank you for the cyber hugs. I really really appreciate them.

    I am trying to keep myself fed and watered, tho the sleep thing is not so easy on the sofa in my mother's room. Still it could be worse. (there's always "worse" when you think about it!)

    I'm thinking of you too (and I totally agree with you about the ballet slippers!)

  4. Oh Jessica! I am so sorry to hear of where you are and what you are doing. As usually, you write beautifully about it...but oh! So hard. I am going to call Mum right now because I know that she hasn't read this either. Sending you love and hugs through the blogosphere!! Nina

  5. Dearest Nina, thank you so much for touching base. I talked to your mom and I will no doubt be giving her a call again in the coming weeks.

    Thank you so much for the caring love and hugs, I'm sending them back to you too!




Related Posts with Thumbnails