My husband’s mother and several of her siblings died with Alzheimer’s. This is a reality that is part of our world as we age. We are about the same age that she and others in her family were when they began to show symptoms of the advance of the disease. In the last few years my spouse’s memory has slipped. However, my own memory is not as sharp as it was even a few years ago. Often when we notice a lapse on his part, we used to look at each other with wide-eyed fear – could he have it? Now, I stare it in the face and use humor as a weapon to quell the panic. We will make the best of it, no matter what comes along.
The following is a poem that I wrote a couple of years ago. It conveys my feelings that the act of wrapping him in my arms reminds me of who he was, is, and shall be for me, always.
I remember watching small boys
Throw frogs against a wall,
Stun them, explaining
To me after that, as they
Enfold them in their hands,
They return to life.
Will you, if this dreaded disease
Is to stun and overtake you
And you become another,
If I embrace you, enfold you in my arms,
Encircle your face within my hands,
Will you come back to me?
(Final revision 4.21.16)
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