Logo Jerry Ham

Over the past few days I have noticed several letters that seem to range from anger and bitterness, which have been directed to certain people who are well known and have been rather prominent in the political scene. It has bothered me a great deal to read the tone of these letters. I've almost had the feeling that there were some who felt that these people are not worthy of sympathy or compassion, indeed it was as if some felt that some got what they deserved by developing this illness we know as Alzheimer's Disease. I know that the vast majority of the people on this list are very compassionate and caring individuals who - through no fault of their own - have found themselves cast in a role that they would never have asked for, if it had been left up to them. I can say that there was a time when I never thought that I would be where I am now. It seems like it has been much longer than the actual 4 years that I have been the primary caregiver for my mother. But we stepped up to the plate and did what we had to do. Anyway, I wrote this hoping to share my thoughts on this subject.

Is it too much to ask?

Is it too much to ask? Just a thought I might share.
For a glimpse of compassion, to be seen here and there?
Those who have been there know full well the pain,
And we who are there, feel it time and again.
This disease knows no limits, gender, politics, or race.
It robs its victims of their memory and grace.
For the caregiver, it seems there is pain without end.
And often we wonder, where's our family and friends?
Whatever we were, should not matter I think.
When from life's sorrows we are all forced to drink.
We who have been there, should easily understand,
And reach out with kindness, and give them a hand.
May I not grow so bitter, that I might fail to see.
The pain that they feel, as it has happened to me.
It is not my purpose to take anyone to task.
Just a glimpse of compassion, is it too much to ask?

© 1999, Jerry Ham
e-mail Jerry.Ham@werner-saumweber.de

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