The Problem With Mother

So Nature deals with us, and takes away
Our playthings one by one, and by the hand
Leads us to rest so gently, that we go
Scarce knowing if we wish to go or stay,
Being too full of sleep to understand
How far the unknown transcends the what we know.

“Nature”,ย  Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Death had better come prepared. She’s mad as hell at his incompetence. The playthings long gone. What left, is there? He stays away, and daily her ire increases.

The smile, she presents to the world, a shoddy mask of normality. Conversation never strays beyond small talk. Anything deeper bores her. Fading out into memory.

Everything has become flavourless. Limp. Bland. Entertainment joyless. Each day, the same as the last. Pain accompanies every move. The mind trapped. The body worthless.

This is not living. All that is left, is to wait. And in that space find forgiveness, just perhaps, for the love who left her alone.

Tired with all these, for restful death I cry,
As to behold desert a beggar born,
And needy nothing trimm’d in jollity,
And purest faith unhappily forsworn,
And gilded honour shamefully misplac’d,
And maiden virtue rudely strumpeted,
And right perfection wrongfully disgrac’d,
And strength by limping sway disabled
And art made tongue-tied by authority,
And folly-doctor-like-controlling skill,
And simple truth miscall’d simplicity,
And captive good attending captain ill:
Tir’d with all these, from these would I be gone,
Save that, to die, I leave my love alone.

“Sonnet 66”, William Shakespeare

Wishing to let go

Wishing to let go

About Running Elk

My given native name, Running Elk, was bestowed in 2008 as I took my first steps as a fully fledged Medicine Man of the Zuni tradition. A most unlikely candidate for the role, my journey as a healer began some four years prior. The detour onto the shamanic way was most unexpected, yet has been one of the most rewarding challenges to date.
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14 Responses to The Problem With Mother

  1. It is so horrible. We put animals “to sleep”– why not us? It is so cruel to make someone, who in all ways is ready to go, linger on. I am so sorry for you AND for her!!

    • Running Elk says:

      Thank you for understanding, Ellen. ๐Ÿ™‚ Every new infirmity is a new frustration for her, and another reason to withdraw from family and social life. From the outside, all appears fine; but she just doesn’t want to be around anymore. And one does wonder what right we have to keep our elderly with us, at all costs, without necessarily recognising their own wishes.

  2. alienorajt says:

    A hugely powerful piece, with which I can readily identify. I absolutely agree with stockdalewolfe’s comments. Thank you for writing, for sharing, for expressing so starkly and beautifully this modern dilemma. xxx

  3. stevetanham says:

    Deeply sympathetic.

  4. It’s so difficult to see loved ones suffer. Stay strong! We understand!

  5. Very moving๐Ÿ’•

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