Monday, February 15, 2016

Now That I Know

Now that I know how it all ends
It is easy to criticize the beginning
And the decisions made during.

In the beginning, one acts without knowledge
One acts with flying and at times raging emotions
One acts as if life and living were still normal.

When you are in the heat of the dementia running
When you are frustrated, frightened, confused, angry
When he is frustrated, frightened, confused, angry.

You do your best but that is never good enough.
Things change so very quickly and unexpectedly
You don't know how to think or feel or figure out.

• • •

Now that I know how it all ends
I find myself looking back criticizing my actions
Creating ways I should have acted and didn't.

During, one acts with immediacy and  impulse
Deciding without really knowing  or understanding
Holding self when it should be becoming selfless.

Replying to him with inappropriate, hurtful behaviors
Responding in ways disrespectful, sometimes mean
Reacting or overreacting without thinking or reason.

Wanting to take it back but too late to do so in this life
Trying to undo what you did but unable to correct the past
Feeling guilty, not wanting to, but feel guilty anyway.

• • •

So, now that I know how it all ends
I also see the good I did and the time I gave
With patience, compassion, and love.

Now, remember the quality of life given him freely
Remember the quick apologies and forgiving, mine and his
Think of the laughter, the smiles, the hugs, the kisses, and the love.

Knowing you did your very best at the time
And that your best will have to be and is good enough
Because you cannot go back, even knowing how it ends.

Being confident you acted with compassion and love
Knowing that you always acted with his best interest in mind
Accepting that he forgives, and that you forgive yourself.


  1. I do so hope that your latest honest writing can give you the ultimate acceptance that you did the best you could for years of challenge and loss. I once read a book called "Non-Finite Grief" which dealt with the experience of taking care of a family member who is Developmentally Disabled, has Dementia or other long-term incurable condition. The basic message is about the difficulties of grieving, not after a person passes, but while you are living with/caring for them.

    As I follow your various heart-wrenching musings I see/hear how much love and devotion that you had with and for Gregory. I sure wish I had my Magic Wand here and could wave it over the IPad to tell you that "All is well, all is well, and all manner of things shall be well" That was from Julian Norwich, a wonderful mystic from the 14th century. I had a copy of that phrase in my closet so I saw it every day during those years of caring for L. That's not to say I didn't get angry. I actually directed most of my anger toward God, saying how could this happen to L/me.

    Sorry for going on so Michael. I do envy you your ability to define and express your emotions.

    Love and hugs,

    1. B,
      Never apologize for “going on.” That’s what friends are for and I appreciate that you are comfortable with your memories as well as for your advice and well wishes!

      For the most part I feel OK and have forgiven myself for times in the past when I was not as good as I wanted to be. But as you know yourself, periodically the emotions still arrive and wave their crooked, gnarled, nightmarish fingers. I find that recently I have been able to allow them in, sit with them, and am able to take a close look to decide if they are True.

      I still need to process them vs ignoring them and if I find them to be untrue toss them out (which sometimes takes several reviews and tossing:-) Thus the periodic “heavy” blog posts. But as you also know, in the writing comes the forgiving, the peace, and the getting up and continuing.

      "All is well, all is well, and all manner of things shall be well”

      Love ya,

  2. There are things in life for which no amount of the experience of others can prepare you.

    1. So agreed Jean. As I said in my reply to "B," it is the processing that helps the healing.


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