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Gift of Poetry: Alzheimer’s Patient’s Prayer

Gift of Poetry: Alzheimer’s Patient’s Prayer

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Families are coming together to celebrate the holidays. Infants to elderly are gathering to share memories and make new ones.

A growing number of families include one or more seniors with Alzheimer’s Disease, cherished loved ones who find it increasingly difficult to recall those life events that are the family’s special memories.

If yours is one of these families, you may find it difficult to comprehend how your parent, grandparent or special elder feels and how they see their life. We know your frustration.

Our gift to you, to help you understand and hopefully make their holidays and yours a little better, is this wonderful poem by Carolyn Haynali.  Whether it’s an introduction or a reminder, these words may help you make more special memories this holiday season.

Alzheimer’s Patient’s Prayer 

Pray for me I was once like you.

Be kind and loving to me that’s how I would have treated you.

Remember I was once someone’s parent or spouse.

I had a life and a dream for the future.

Speak to me, I can hear you even if I don’t understand what you are saying.

Speak to me of things in my past of which I can still relate.

Be considerate of me, my days are such a struggle.

Think of my feelings because I still have them and can feel pain.

Treat me with respect because I would have treated you that way.

Think of how I was before I got Alzheimer’s;

I was full of life, I had a life, laughed and loved you.

Think of how I am now, my disease distorts my thinking, my feelings, and my ability to respond, but I still love you even if I can’t tell you.

Think about my future because I used to.

Remember I was full of hope for the future just like you are now.

Think how it would be to have things locked in your mind and can’t let them out.

I need you to understand and not blame me, but Alzheimer’s.

I still need the compassion and the touching and most of all I still need you to love me.

Keep me in your prayers because I am between life and death.

The love you give will be a blessing from God and both of use will live forever.

How you live and what you do today will always be remembered

in the heart of the Alzheimer’s Patient.

 

4 Responses to Gift of Poetry: Alzheimer’s Patient’s Prayer

  1. That’s beautiful. You know, Barry, I’ve often thought about this terrible disease as a curse to the family and an odd blessing to the sufferer. Of course, in its initial stages it must be dreadful to know your mind is failing. But later on, maybe it is a way of allaying the fear of death and staying in old pleasant memories? Am I off base?

    • Your comments are very heartfelt, Bruce. Often times as Alzheimer’s progresses it is harder on the loved ones who see the decline and are helpless to change the course of its progression. The senior is often more troubled in the early stages when their memories are still more intact but know what they are facing in the future. Hopefully, with more research we will be able to make some inroads into treatment and prevention! Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

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