The Visitor

Being an advocate for our seniors , always creating awareness for the importance of visiting the seniors, now that privilege has been removed…Amidst the world chaos struggling with the Covid-19 pandemic, the awareness is still a valid cause. This poem speaks of what it means to an elderly soul who spends day after day in a long term care home and then is blessed with a visitor. Now with strong measures in place with no visitors allowed to help fight against Covid-19 in the homes. Please say a prayer for these dear loved ones. I wonder if the saying applies, “you don’t appreciate what you have until it’s gone”  

Morning dew
cool tired feet
caressing each step
I feel relief,
drowsy daisies
start to stretch
welcoming warmth
from evenings slumber

Relief though faint
strength is gained
amidst the
dawning glory,
unfolding promise
clings with certain
embracing grace
with daylight hues

Meadows green
of afternoon
the comfort of
someones touch,
the lonely ends
as smiles begin
welcoming love
amid the words

Once again
the cool returns
yellowing rays
turn into gold,
I bid farewell
a day well spent
contentment folds in
peaceful rest

KJS

I want to add a very important note, a huge thank you and prayers to all our health care workers putting their lives on the line everyday to care for our dear seniors. God bless them and keep them safe ❤

Denial

No hidden code to cypher

as ink on cotton stained

a neon sign it blinds the truth

is it easy to walk away?

Be direct this is no riddle

without an answer in a rhyme 

gaze upon the mirrored reflection

no crystal ball through time

Seniors now for once were youth

do we feel exempt?

denial devised to sacrifice truth

I hear the echoes of the steps

KJS

Amidst youth or mid life strides, it is very easy to push the truth back out of the way replacing it with myths that growing old is so far down the road; the truth is, it is on our back porch, and we will be stepping down placing our feet on the same path of life’s fragility. 

Let’s join our voices in fighting for change, in creating that very important communication concerning end of life care, and the dignity, respect, privacy and compassion that are not only deserved but is crucial for the quality of life in seniors twilight years when they are taking their final steps on this earth.

For every like comment and share you are helping with this awareness. Thank you ❤ 

 

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#seniors #elderly #life #pathway #sacrifice #truth #change #communication #exempt #denial #needed #care #dignity #respect #privacy #earned #deserved #awareness #poetry

 






Failing Footholds

Raising awareness through poetry for our dear seniors & elderly. Advocates are a necessity of life for these dear souls  With every like share and comment you are helping create awareness. Thank you.

Failing Footholds

Hushed summer breezes fill the air
as silent lullabies calm the heart
cradled in promise we wait for the grace
to whom shall we go if we cannot walk

Absence of light the eyes are wearied
suspended in darkness lost voice of the soul
answers are hidden to questions not spoken
to whom shall we speak if we cannot talk

Beyond explanations intent of meaning
further than strength we lose our way
falling prey to no new beginnings
stumbling through life our only survival

KJS

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Changing Colours

Now some may take offence to this writing but please take into consideration I am creating awareness, in honour and respect of our dear dad who left this world on February 29 at 11:35 AM. Surrounded by his daughters in a room where it reeked in lack of privacy, dignity, respect, and compassionate communication, these are things I will continue to fight for, for change for our seniors, our dear elderly who have earned the honour and respect to have a specific end of life care room. This poem reflects the truth in his death, his last few days and hours and the grief of his daughters. Thank you ❤ 

 

Pillows of grief cushion the fall

through veil of tears attempted goodbyes

interrupted by fear and impolite noise

death is lurking the soul in waiting

 

Bedside manners filled with prayer

holding the hand that soon will be gone

air is thick with cluttered interruptions 

enters and exits rob us of moments

 

Angels hover our hearts are breaking

straining to hear breath of wings

clamorous shuffles we try to focus

songs are sung to mask such commotion

 

United despaired we cling to hope 

that soon death will not be displayed

pleading for grace and a quite arbor

respect for a soul fighting for life

 

Solitude required why must  we beg

like scavengers we crave for dignity

respect for our loved one on display

communication scattered lost in shuffled 

 

Broken now the colours change

rapid breath before the calling 

we strain to hear the heart of father

the hands once warm now feel the chill

 

He rushes now to meet our mother

embraced in heaven we say goodbyes

amidst our sorrow his pain is over 

the show is over the curtain falls

KJS

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#awareness #communication #elderly #seniors #dying #dignity #respect #honour #privacy #compassion #consideration #mp #Ontario #government #local #longtermcare #endoflifecare #love #like @share #comment #prayforchange  

The Embrace

Sustain my heart 

with a long good bye

watching you leave 

till your shadow dissolves

into tears of longing 

oh… not to be left behind!

 

Weary eyes that

give way to rest

slipping into dreams

of yesterdays 

oh… familiar caresses! 

from one who went before

 

Oh…what is this! 

new life of watching

waiting and wondering

a world where 

days are echoed 

with such continual emptiness

 

Pleadings with prayer 

oh…God help me!

release my body

from this prison

filled with little dignity

and racked with pain and sorrow

 

Respect of a life 

the sword is raised

shrouded by heaviness

of grieving and death

oh…arms are lifted!

as breath turns into embrace

KJS

 

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Photo compliments of Joyce Peters ❤

The Visit

Through glass they view

the skies of blue

that turn to shades

of gloomy hues

 

Down long halls

encased grey walls

which hold the rails

that brace their falls

 

Beyond the doorway

shadows of ghosts

that linger awhile

to encourage and boast

 

Have they escaped 

this prison of age

their souls still restless

bound by this cage

 

Release their bondage

shatter the spell

this visit of kin

the final farewell

KJS

 

As an advocate for seniors our dear elderly, I encourage and admonish, your dear loved ones need an advocate, they need to have frequent family visits; for one day it will be you sitting wondering waiting, peering through panes of glass, looking through doorways, will they come today?

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Dying In Dignity

Dying with Dignity 

(Dignity in Death in Long Term Care Homes)

Dedicated to the recent passing of my dear daddy and to my dear mother may they rest in peace.

In memory of all the dear elderly to whom have completed this journey and to those who are on this journey.

 

The halls that stretch from end to end echo the weary steps of the elderly

imprints of their tired lives embrace the cold hard floors.

Each shuffling step engraved within the tiles reflect their life stories, chapters of their journeys, paragraphs of remember whens, life events that got lost in the traffic of daily life in the halls.

For so many dear seniors their last few paragraphs of their life, silent stories are etched in long term care homes, where their hurt, pain, suffering, searching for their lost memories, struggles of missing sentences to their lives. Who will listen, who will write and publish their stories, so they can be read, heard and cherished?

Spending such a great amount of time in these homes with the seniors, especially with my parents, I watch in sadness as some go day after day, month after month with no visitors, no family, their lives have become a daily routine of their own lost thoughts and unspoken words, eyes that are dry with so many tears. No matter what or how these daily routines are mapped out these dear souls are wending their way, the destination “end of life”.

At end of life there is a story that demands respect, dignity, compassion, and privacy in goodbyes, grief, and in lasting impressions of a loved ones passing; In able to write this merited account there needs to be a place, a space to create atmosphere that enables ALL the attributes of respect and dignity of ones souls crossing over from their weary life to the other realm.

My father spent his remaining days at a Long Term Care home in Grey county, his days were filled with his daughter(s) visits, writing poems and drawing cartoons. There were dedicated friends from his church family who visited him on a weekly basis, all these things contributed to his happiness and quality of life. There were amazing nurses and staff at his home that he learned to rely on and aided in his well being. As dads health started failing and went from failing to rapid decline after he fell out of his bed, it was time to sign the papers for palliative care and end of life care. I could go into great detail but as it is, I want to maintain some privacy…my dad was dying, the family wanted him moved to “the suite”, a private room (where my late mother rest her soul spent her remaining  hours of her life in palliative end of life care) …where an elderly soul could die in peace, privacy, and dignity, surrounded by his daughters to say final good byes, to spend precious private family time, for dad to have respect in his concluding hours. Sadly we learned that the so called suite was used not just to accommodate palliative care but for other reasons and other care as we were not told this up front. If we had know ALL the details and the communication had been there we would have made other plans! It shocked me that in a long term care home of 100 residents there was not one specific room solely for the purpose of offering respect, dignity, and privacy for an elderly soul whom was on palliative end of life care. I will mention there were a couple offers that were given  approximately 3 hours before my dad took his final breath, offers that were given after desperate emails and phone calls and text messages, offers that added to our pain and grief because these offers could not have happened due to the frail condition of my dear dad and that his end of life was close at hand, as I was by his side it was extremely evident the angels were hovering.

To say the least out of respect for my dad I want and plead for change! I do not desire any other soul to have to die with his or her death on display, I do not want the family to feel the shocking appalling sinking feeling that their last hours with their dying family member will be scarred with memories of fighting for this deserved respect.

Please lets take this serious, in honour of our seniors, the elderly! Lets fight for change they deserve that at least! in my closing I would like to admonish all families to allow their family member(s) to have an advocate, I cannot begin to imagine what all would have been swept under the carpet if I had not been my dad’s advocate and went to bat for him! We would not be here today if it were not for our seniors, lets give them the safe quality of life they deserve. God bless them all.

Hold my hand and feel my life

the path though worn is there

Threads of memory still exist

tattered frayed and threadbare

 

Feel my heart ’tis broken and torn

do you have compassion?

Mend my soul with threads of gold

spun from interaction

 

Stay awhile to get a sense

why oft times I feel so lost

Now and then you’d never know

the heaviness of my cross

 

Bring a ray of sunshine with you

melt away the icy fears

Bestow me with the warmth of friendship

exchanging smiles instead of tears

KJS©

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Faith Beyond The Chains

No recognition in the brown of her eyes
i miss the touch of her voiced memories
one by one they vanish leaving me with sorrow
and her with outbursts fuelled by frustration

We continue to guess what may be the cause
surmise to bring small comforts
conclusions masked with bitter hurt
but there are no winners here at all

Endless hallways tiled with failed circumstances
fallen between the cracks awaiting fulfillment
become dormant part of the crumbled plaster
given up by the deteriorating walls of hope

Heavy chained to the demon
barred from reality there is no key
the lock corroded with prescriptions of
empty promises bandaids for remaining life

 

KJS2018

Dedicated to my dear mom who battled dementia for over 8 years, and went home to Glory July 5, 2017 on the wings of angels and a song by her 5 robins ❤

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Lullaby of Peace

sunset

The smell of death is pungent
dementia lurking in the shadows
the air is heavy but with a calmness
the torture will soon be over

Months of sadness give way to silence
eyes speak of better things to come
I hold her hand and sing of day
where memories of this shall be no more

A soft wind blows in fields of peace
gentle is the lullaby that calls her home
release my heart oh soul take flight
realm of glory eternal life

~

I have sat and held the hand of precious elderly, prayed in their ear when

their eyes could not open; when they no longer ate because the dementia told them they were already full.

I have sat and sang at the bedside of dear seniors and felt their last breath of life on my cheek as they crossed over into the realm of peace and no pain. I have been so richly blessed and honoured.

~

We have a hope of eternal life no death or dementia can
hinder the profound promises of God’s word.
Hold onto these promises they’ll carry one through.

KJS

Finding the Sun (A Husband A Caregiver)

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With shoulders drooped he makes his way
to the warm comfort of his chair.
she’s asleep now, his hushed burdens can be revealed.
Slowly, silently, weariness wells up in his eyes
and readily they fall down his weathered cheeks.
He doesn’t dab away the tears, but lets them fall freely now~
releasing exhaustion and emotion that no one bears witness to.

For a few moments thoughts are allowed to surface
but quickly sending them back to his crowded mind.
He shuffles through his doubts and fears
deciding which ones he needs and wants to accept.
A soft noise startles his minds quarrel,
but to his relief it is just the complaints of the old fridge.

Reaching for his bible he finds comfort in verses of faith,
closing his eyes in prayer to set free thankfulness~
humbly he asks for strength to bear this burden.
The Lord is his strength the rock of his salvation,
once again he draws from the ultimate source of grace.

He silently whispers amen in his heart
and without knowing falls into a well deserved slumber;
the dreams are the same…
holding hands and walking through meadows of green,
she knows him, and sweetly calls his name.
With tenderness and love they embrace under the tree of life,
the former life is past, dementia has no place in this land.

*****

He is awaken by his wife’s hand gently resting on his arm,
he smiles at her and says “I love you”
without realizing he starts softly humming that beloved old hymn,
“I have heard of a land, where the sun is always shining…
God has promised in His word, bow thy head and you’ll be heard.”

KJS

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http://www.gofundme.com/momsdream