Haibun Monday – the only thing we have to fear…

Today I am hosting the Haibun Monday prompt. It is on fear – fear of things, fear of being out of control, fear of losing loved ones, fear – primal and raw. Come join us today.

My Mother’s Daughter
Several years ago my mother began displaying erratic and irresponsible behavior. She was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Since then it has been a downhill road – she has forgotten how to walk, often forgets she has not eaten, has become incontinent. It is heartbreaking. Especially as my mother varies between paranoid, hostile towards me, and loving mother. My husband and I have no children. We did not get married until I was 49 and he was 39. It is just us and his mother who is starting to go somewhat erratic herself.

I am afraid when I look at my mother that one day, I will be sitting in a wheelchair, in her place. I will have no one to know or to care about me except maybe a nursing home. I kept her at home as long as I could but then one day, it became evident I could no longer care for my mother. Then I was afraid of the nursing home in which to place her. But praise God, she was sent from being in the hospital to a small nursing home with only 90 beds and ten minutes from our home. I can visit her often and have formed, during her stay there since January, friendships among the staff and caring relationships with some of the residents. But I am still afraid. My past fears of clowns, losing loved ones, spiders – pales in comparison to this new fear of Alzheimers. Alzheimer’s – one of the scariest words in the human vocabulary.

spring sky turns black – storm
begins and wind blows strong – hawk
flies against the wind

47 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. kim881
    Apr 17, 2017 @ 15:15:27

    Oh, Toni, I know what you are going through. I’m still being buffeted by those winds.

    Reply

  2. Jane Dougherty
    Apr 17, 2017 @ 15:30:56

    The haiku with its broken run-on lines reflects the erratic behaviour you describe. I’ve not had to cope with this heartbreaking situation. Sending you strength and compassion.

    Reply

  3. Beverly Crawford
    Apr 17, 2017 @ 15:50:26

    Oh, my dear friend, your fear is mine. I watched my mother lose touch with reality bit by bit. It is called “the long goodbye” for a reason, and my heart goes out to anyone dealing with it. I like the way you structured your haiku. Prayers coming your way!

    Reply

  4. sarahsouthwest
    Apr 17, 2017 @ 16:06:54

    This is so painful, and so frightening. Thank you for sharing such a personal piece. I do send you strength and hope.

    Reply

  5. frankhubeny
    Apr 17, 2017 @ 16:33:13

    I have been through the deaths of both of my parents. It is not an easy time. Best wishes.

    Reply

  6. Glenn Buttkus
    Apr 17, 2017 @ 16:41:55

    Old age brings new fears to me daily–and most of them are lethal. Many of us are hawks, crows, eagles being buffeted about by hostile winds, not a thermal in sight.

    Reply

  7. merrildsmith
    Apr 17, 2017 @ 17:07:20

    I had to read your after I read Jane’s. It is so powerful. Thank you for sharing.
    I’ve not had to deal with Alzheimer’s or dementia (yet). I agree though that the words, the idea, is SO terrifying, to see in our loved ones or to imagine going through ourselves. I’m so sorry you’ve had to go through this.
    It’s interesting how you and Jane had similar images in your haiku.

    Reply

  8. Grace
    Apr 17, 2017 @ 17:38:35

    This is indeed very scary and fearful, to lose one’s memories and dying alone ~ Sending you hugs and lots of sunshine Toni ~ Your haiku of that sky turning black is descending into darker and fearful times ~ Thanks for hosting ~

    Reply

  9. Victoria C. Slotto
    Apr 17, 2017 @ 17:52:05

    As you can guess, I could have written the same prose with a few little tweaks, but, oh–that haiku. Gobsmaked me, it did.

    Reply

  10. Bodhirose
    Apr 17, 2017 @ 19:21:33

    My 91 year old mother has the fear that she’ll end up with Alzheimer’s like two of her older sisters who have now passed away. We try to reassure her even though she is forgetful and confused at times…maybe we’re trying to reassure ourselves too… Sending you love and courage, Toni.

    Reply

  11. jillys2016
    Apr 17, 2017 @ 21:06:43

    Powerful and transparant writing! (He sustains, my friend.)

    Reply

  12. Olga
    Apr 17, 2017 @ 22:29:19

    I feel for you, Toni. My mother started her journey in that direction, but the divine forces took her early. Blessings to all the good memories. ❤

    Reply

  13. Waltermarks
    Apr 17, 2017 @ 23:09:51

    Reality is way scarier than fiction. I feel your fears Toni. It’s good you can see her daily. My mom took a long slow goodbye. It’s a rugged ride. God Bless You

    Reply

  14. Trackback: Day 17 – Maritime Confrontation | Hephaestus’ Waste & Cosmic Rubble
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  16. maria
    Apr 18, 2017 @ 01:29:32

    Aw, Toni. This is one heartfelt haibun. Sending smiles your way.. ~ thank you for hosting!

    Reply

  17. Sabio Lantz
    Apr 18, 2017 @ 05:48:56

    I loved the hawk — you flying against the fears and continued generous care for your mother. May your fears never come true.

    Reply

  18. lynn__
    Apr 18, 2017 @ 10:28:17

    Beautiful haiku, Toni! Thank you for sharing…my mother-in-law died of Alzheimers, after 8 long years. Hard to see their personalities change but in the end she mellowed and we were glad to love her still.

    Reply

  19. ladynyo
    Apr 18, 2017 @ 10:54:42

    Toni, this is heartbreaking and something we all worry about. You have done everything in your power for your mother. And she is so lucky to have you as a daughter. The haiku was -breathtaking. The structure, the words, the intent. One of my favorite of yours…or mine. Bless you, dear friend.

    Reply

  20. whimsygizmo
    Apr 18, 2017 @ 11:46:51

    Oh, Toni. My whole, whole heart goes out to you and your mama.
    And your haiku (ever, always) is gorgeous.

    Reply

  21. kaykuala h
    Apr 18, 2017 @ 20:36:06

    It was a frightenting experience with Hank’s MIL too! What hurt most that others could not grasp the helplessness but still assuming them as before!

    Hank

    Reply

  22. colorfulpen
    Apr 18, 2017 @ 23:06:11

    My heart goes out to you. My husband’s grandmother had Alzheimer’s and it was difficult to watch even from a distance. We lived 6 hours away and visited as often as we could. The decline is such a slow and painful process for everyone involved. Your haiku is beautiful.

    Reply

  23. rosemawrites
    Apr 19, 2017 @ 02:40:24

    ” one of the scariest words in the human vocabulary.”

    Oh how true. Sending hugs your way. and blessings too. Thank you for being so raw. ❤

    Reply

  24. susanmehr
    Apr 19, 2017 @ 06:20:24

    Any disease is scary, as the years pass by the closer death stares us in the face. Beautiful

    Reply

  25. paul scribbles
    Apr 19, 2017 @ 07:44:40

    A deeply personal write and a Haiku that is so evocative. Made me ponder this. Maybe the Hawk that flies into the wind learns to fly all the better.

    Reply

  26. Sreeja Harikrishnan
    Apr 19, 2017 @ 08:17:33

    Sometimes life gives us so much to fear about…and we have to fly like that eagle…high…away from fears…catching on with things that will give solace to the heart. Haiku expressed so well…!

    Reply

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