"I Will
Remember You"

Each Day Goes By
Brenda D. Arnold

Each day goes by
She looks at me
I wonder who's face
It is she sees
As a child
She held me near
She'd sing to me
To calm my fear
A song about a yellow rose
She was going back to see
Then one about a waltz
Folks did in Tennessee
It's my turn now
To sing and calm her fears
To hold her hand and stroke her hair
To wipe away her tears
She suffers from a sickness now
That's robbed her of her mind
We pray for strength and hope
A cure one day we'll find
She was there for me when I was born
Though it's escaped her now
That day she said she'd always remember
The illness stole somehow
Her husband, Walt, her son named Bill
Her sister Ruby Lee
Her granddaughter Jennifer
Then of course there's me
Her husband's gone, her sister's ill
Her son can't face his pain
It's up to me and husband Tim
Alone left to explain
It takes it's toll on all of us
To watch her everyday
To help her dress to help her eat
To help her find her way
Some days I curse Some days I cry
Some days it's hard to take
I ask myself just why I do it
What difference will it make
I do it so she'll have a life
Because I love her so
As she was there for me at birth
I'll be there when she goes
The Alzheimer's has changed her
From who she used to be
Regardless of how sick she gets
She'll always be Mamaw
At least she will to me

Copyright © 2001 Brenda D. Arnold
Used by permission of the author.

Brenda wrote to me:
"3 years ago, my grandmother, my "Mamaw" fell
at her home. After being examined, the doctor
told my father his mother had Alzheimer's. He put
her into a nursing home in California (where we are
originally from). She began to decline very quickly.
After months of not eating, they put a tube into her
stomach to feed her. It killed me to hear about how she
didn't recognize my dad and didn't know what was going
on around her. My husband and I decided that she would
come to South Carolina and live with us. I would take
care of her for as long as she had left. 4 days after
her arrival, she began eating (after 13 months with no
solid food). Although her Alz. has progressed, the rate
has been slowed compaired to what it could be. She was
too far into the disease for medication to help slow it
down, so we just take each day as it comes. She is still
eating and doing well. I became involved with my local
chapter of the Alz. Association, and now I have been
asked to be a board member of my local chapter. I have
been to D.C. to address issues surrounding Alz. and have
raised over $5000.00 in the last year. I have been trying
to get our local media to pick up my story and use it to
help promote awareness about Alz ... Memory Walk is coming
up and as a committee member, I am busy raising money for
the cause. I've had many people tell me they could not handle
what I do, but even with the sleepless nights and all, I
wouldn't have Mamaw any where else."

Previous Poem | Next Poem
Back to Contributed Poetry | Back to Home Page

You are visitor number
to this page since August 20, 2001

Background from Ashton Leigh.