I am grateful that you have visited my blog. I hope your visit is a successful one. Please feel free to comment, contact or otherwise interact with the site and with me. I'm beginning to spread my wings photographically, so please take a look at Paul's Photos on Flickr (on the right). which will lead you to my presence on Flickr. Again, your comments, feedback or whatever are very welcome. Let us assist each other in our pursuit of our own truth, our own Dreaming. Peace!

Monday, October 5, 2009

You Got Oldies? They're ALL Goldies!

I don't usually read stuff in the papers about health, medical or death related stuff. (yes I know: how can I say I'm conducting an exploration/experiment in truth without looking at the inevitables of life like death. Good point, okay?). But on the weekend I found myself reading a column about the writer's sadness and problems with caring for his mother who was in a nursing home, nearing death from dementia.
He talks about his not so close relationship with his mother and her on-going deterioration as the dementia takes more of her mind. It's a cruel cruel thing, dementia. Anyway, as the months go by, he finds that his mother is less able to recognise him, except on the odd 'good day'. But, then, even those good days disappear and he is left sitting trying to cheer up this poor lady who he knows won't remember his visit, and who doesn't know him anyway.
Then, after many episodes of sitting and thinking sadly about the situation, many times of frustration about not being able to communicate with his mother, he starts telling her stories about shared experiences (there aren't many: as I said, they hadn't been close and he hadn't really lived with her for much of his childhood).
He sees that the times when he tells these stories are the only times his mother smiles and seems to be 'happy'. Of course he still knows she won't remember any of it, but so? He thinks the moment is enough. He feels better, she feels better. It's a happy result. For now at least.
Anyway, I want to share with you the last couple of sentences of the piece, as I think it applies to writers and other creative people 'suffering' a block or a low mood. I know many creative people also suffer from depression and from other mood problems: it goes with the territory I'm afraid. So, here it is:
Try this. Tell them the old sweet stories. It's a lot better than sitting there feeling sad.

Tell them the old sweet stories. And the not so sweet too. And if you are like me, a creative type who is constantly frustrated at not being able to get the stuff out that you want to, and which you know is there, then don't sit around feeling sad (which is what I do a lot of the time. How boring is that?), tell them some of the old stories.What kind of stories? There are many stories we all have: memories, ideas, opinions, fantasies. You name it. As a writer or other creative type, you know what I am saying.
Who is 'them'? I guess it's anyone who'll listen. It's the computer keyboard. It's your blog (hey! I could do that couldn't I?). It's your diary or notebook. It's any way you can get it down and out into the world. Which is where, after all, stories belong. Of course on a blog, or in your notebook or in a file on your hard drive, your writing may not be read by anyone other than you. But, it is the first step isn't it in the process of getting it read by others? You've got to start somewhere.I was feeling VERY sad today. Like I say, it's my usual way of being. So I sat in the local bakery, had a hot chocolate (just one: the other drinks I had were decaf coffee) and wrote a few pages in my journal. Then when I got home, I got out my laptop and started on this post. Nobody will ever read my journal (I think), but maybe someone will read this blog post. But you know something? I don't feel quite so sad, 'cos I've told you this little story.
Thank you for that.

I hope nobody will think I am comparing my pathetic sadness with that suffered by the son of a parent who is losing their mind and their life to dementia. I cannot begin to get my head around that kind of sorrow and pain. Indeed, I hope that, by telling this story and adapting it for my own purposes, I do honour to the writer of that column, as well as to his mother who, after all found escape from what had been a hard life in that other world that is dementia.
I thank them for this story.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for your comments. Know I will respond, even if it takes a while.