Dorothy Womack


Although my circumstance was connected to caregiving for my own mother, I address this to those caregivers today who are dealing with spousal responsibilites. Loneliness, I believe, is not a condition of the MIND, but of the SPIRIT - You miss what you shared with your loved one before the illness took over - You miss their touch, their companionship, their presence - You are not yet ready to adjust to the world of 'widow/widower' as your loved one is still living on the earth - You do not 'fit' because others have already moved beyond the physical loss of their mates, and you have not even arrived!! This presents an unbelievable hardship, in my eyes - to watch the person to whom you committed your entire life start to slowly disappear right before your very eyes. I would think it would bring a sadness much deeper than words could ever express and a loneliness which could not be dismissed without the Spirit's consolation within your heart. Keep your eyes wide open, because surely there is another person out there who has a loved one in a similar condition also. Someone who would understand your loneliness and need for someone to relate your true feelings, not just make small talk. I know you feel no one has ever walked through this ordeal before, but I have learned myself that my experience was not an isolated one either - Yes, the situations are individual to us as human beings, but they are not beyond the realm of human experience!! What this means is that even though my situation seemed tailor made to ME, it has happened to others in different ways, but with the same solution - Turning to God for our help, our hope and our haven.......


'Who are You?' - He looked at me and asked with widened eyes ---
Well, I'm your wife of many years - Don't act as though surprised!!
He studied me again, and said: 'Who are You?' - Don't delay
I do not recognize a thing in all you've had to say....

Do you come here to take my hand and care for me, so dear ---
Or are you around to frighten me and cause my heart to fear?
I looked at him, this man I'd known for almost all my life ---
The man who'd raised two children - Worked hard, and loved his wife.

Within his eyes, I saw the truth - No longer could he hide ---
He really doesn't know me now although I'm by his side!!
I ask for God to strengthen me for all which lies ahead ---
To heal the stabbing pains I feel inside my heart and head.

I'd always thought the cruelest words to one, could ever be said
Were: 'I don't love you anymore' - But I found out instead
The hardest words to ever hear - That break your heart in two...
Are not born out of cruelty.... But innocence
And ask: 'Who are You?'

Copyright © 2000 Dorothy Womack,
contributing writer for Today's Caregiver.
Used by permission of the author.

Background Copyright © 2000 Brenda S. Parris

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