Eulogy

Some of you may know that I have been working on writing a book for a few years now. It’s been a huge challenge to get this book buttoned up and finished, as life has sent my eyes looking in many other directions over the years. My hope is that this blog will help me get my book in order, and finally published. In thinking of my book, and intentions about it, I gave some deep thought to the gratitude I feel that I still have the time and opportunity to finish it, and publish some of its pages to this blog. Life is so busy, and there are infinite reasons to not pay attention to the many gifts life presents to us. One in particular is gratitude. I know there a million memes, and sayings floating throughout every spectrum of available media regarding gratitude. I hope that this post will give you cause to stop, even for just a minute and give it some serious thought. Gratitude is one of life’s most precious gifts, and through it, we discover true hope and faith. Does that mean that life will be idyllic if we practice living in gratitude? Unfortunately, it will not, and that is not the answer. What does it really give us? It allows us to discover the truly magical sense of life that is usually hidden behind busy lives and thoughts. Even in the most dire of circumstances (and yes, I now own the “C” card and feel that I have the right to speak of dire circumstances), gratitude for the things in life that still remain constant and safe gives us hope. Even if our gratitude can only be limited to this one moment, this very second, that we can still take a breath……then we still have the precious possibility of at least another, and at most, finding joy around us. Even in the grief and sadness I have found in the thought of leaving my loved ones, I can still find gratitude in that I do love, and am loved, and will be loved. That alone can turn my eyes back toward the here and now, and reminds me how precious and lovely my life is. Here is my poem Eulogy. Don’t be fooled by its name. I hope you find the gratitude in these written words that I intended to uncover.

In my childhood dreams I lose myself,
Memories and wishes once put on a shelf.
Who was I then, so long ago?
A child, a daughter, sister, friend and foe.
Dreams of life filled with yearning for love,
So many lifted away as if on winged dove.
Some came to be through life’s unfold,
Some would never become, or ever be told.
Eyes that glistened with untold promise,
Wishes and dreams never to abolish.
Would I learn the meaning of being a true friend?
Always to stay near, even to a bitter end?
Hopes of being a mother, of one, two or three,
Filled with laughter and cheer, on my bent knee.
A wish of making my father proud,
Hope of carrying his burdened shroud.
If these wishes are hopes and dreams to come true,
Will I remember them, or begin to think them new?
These dreams draw me back, and bring me around to see,
A child filled with hope, that child is still me.

Forever

I wrote Forever a while back, thinking of the many loves that I have lost throughout my life. I wrote this poem thinking of the perspective of the one who has passed. Interestingly, while looking over this poem today, my own perspective came into focus. I wonder, is this how I am seen from the other side? About eight months ago I had a very powerful dream, or premonition. Everything was in it’s place and seemed to be played out in real time, and that was when I first realized I had cancer again, and this is what would bring my time to its end. I saw myself in the mirror in my room, and as I walked by, I gazed at myself and realized I was dying. My body was thin and frail, and the first thought that came to me was a very matter of fact thought “Oh, I have cancer and I’m dying”. I was not alarmed by what I saw in the mirror, nor the thought that came with it. It felt very much like a calm notification of what was to be. My mom and dad came to me in this dream, even though they passed many, many years ago. They stood in the corner of my room as I lay back down to rest in my bed, and I was the only one that could see them. They came to help me find my way away from this world. Their presence was reassuring, and calm. My diagnosis didn’t come until six months later, after this dream. Even with my doctors’ reassurance that I was fine during those six months, I knew what I knew, and I was right. I hope that you find some solace in this poem. It meant a lot to me to write it, and I believe it………

I came by your bed last night as I saw you weep,
I whispered I love you, as I wiped a tear from your cheek,
I laid my face against your hand, a caress I tried to steal,
My heart in your hand is what I wanted you to feel.
Do you see me in your dreams my darling, my love, my friend?
I have never left, and I am here with you until the very end.
I walk with you each morning, my memories never leave,
I remember you loving and holding me, but now time makes us grieve.
I follow you throughout each day, I see your wilted hands,
Your tired face and broken heart is more than I can stand.
You sat alone by my grave, stooped and very stark,
Please know I am not alone, or without you in the dark,
As we walked together home this night,
I saw you scurry to find the light.
Do you hear me my love? Do you feel me gently touch your knee?
I cry and whimper, and hope you hear my plea.
I will never leave you.  I can never go away,
I will walk beside you every single day.
I hold you in my heart, as I lay with you every still night,
And I watch for your smile, to make this seem all right.
As day folds into night, I long so for your touch,
I long for life, for breath, I miss you so much.
Goodnight my dear, life is large, and there is much for you to see,
So I will follow along until your journey brings you back to me.

Doctor

I cling to you for so many reasons,
The key to my wellness your smile carries to hold,
Are you my savior, and the length of my seasons?
My hopes and fears entwined to be told.
A gentle smile brings quiet to an unsettled soul,
Your gentle hand brings me to comfort,
Lead me forward, with my hand in hold.
Fear fills my head, my heart and my mind,
Walking these hallways wondering what I will find.
Each visit brings worries and so many cares,
But your eyes bring me comfort, your words always shared.
Walk with me doctor, through the halls and trenches we have both found,
This journey is ours, with your lead to bring me back around.
Our hands will be left raw through the battle of this brutal fight,
Bloodied and saddened but never relenting in this plight. 
Your compassion brings me peace, and settles my unsettled,
Your words give me strength for the demons I must wrestle.
Eyes that see through me, you see my fear
For my future is uncertain and ever unclear.
Help me be strong, remind me to be humble.
Dear healer of bodies, souls as well,
Know that I see the person and the soul in a doctor’s shell,
Doctor, dear doctor, know that I see,
The person, the woman, daughter, sister, and friend who sees me.
Your eyes share the pain of your calling when the frail start to fall,
Even when your voice sternly repeats the learned recall.
I hold on to you tight with hope and fear,
You hold me tight, in hope and care.
Compassionate healer, compassionate friend,
Help me walk this path, help me when my time comes to end.