This day the only interesting item to arrive in the Pond mailbox was the newest Land's End catalog. Once I started the dinner, I sat down in a cozy chair next to the fireplace in the Keeping Room to look at this version of a "wish book". To tell you the the truth, the gloomy skies with a mix of snow and rain began to be banished by the catalog photography and the brightly colored Spring and Summer wardrobe offerings. This is residual magic from my childhood. When a "wish book" arrived siblings and I would cozy together on the sofa to look closely and pick our favorite thing on each page. This too is a much treasured lesson from our mother. To savor, to envision, to choose, to share, to dream together. Lessons of family to last a lifetime.
Then on page 87 I unexpectedly got stabbed in the heart.
On that page, Land's End is offering carnation pink, all terrain, Mary Janes.
"My mother would love these shoes"! I think with excitement.
Then I remembered my mother no longer needs shoes.
Others who have lost, or are losing , loves know it is the little things which gut you the worst.
The big things, we brace for. For the big things we pray for Strength. Pray for Compassion. Pray for Acceptance. Pray for what we are feeling to NOT be our primary memory years from now. I
especially pray to not let this relentless trip toward death overshadow the experiences from a life lived.
In the case of my mother, she reads her daily paper, watches the news, observes the birds at the feeders, watches eagerly for buds to awaken in the view from her window. The view from her hospital bed. The view outside the misery. My mother loves on her pup, talks to her children and soldiers on as best she can. Cruel arthritis has stolen from her the pleasure of going out to garden, walking her own pup, getting herself dressed, combing her own hair or wearing cute little pink shoes. As immobility increases, circulation decreases and edema congregates. In her ankles, in those tiny little Aunt Pittypat feet, and now climbing upward. There are these huge foam booties velcroed to my Mother's feet. To prevent pressure points. Way bigger than Minnie Mouse shoes. I hate them. Actually, I hate there is a need for them. I guess I am , in fact, grateful they are available to minimize the suffering, or the complications.
Still, at some horrid place in my core, I want to shred them with a machete, or a buggy whip or a blender. I crave the satisfaction of being able to eradicate objects I have come to loathe. As if by attacking the velcro booties I could attack the arthritis which is stealing my mother. I cannot. But I yearn to vanquish that thieving, murderous, relentless horror that is end stage arthritis. I crave the release from an overwhelming anger I am forced to control. It is not to be. I cannot vanquish this foe with weapons or prayers. I must endure. I must conceal this huge wrath and be cheerful, positive, reinforcing, normal. For my mother. Who is suffering quite enough without feeling the angst of her children.
This issue of Land's End,
does not have any sleepwear.
It doesn't really matter.
What I wish for,
with all my heart,
going to be delivered
to my mailbox
in a "wish book".