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I saw this poem for the first time tonight and felt compelled to share. I remember feeling torn, much in the way Susan Macaulay describes, two years ago. The internal struggle and conversations with God. Bargaining. Begging. Questioning. Not wanting her to suffer any longer, yet not wanting to let her go. Because at least when she was here, I could hold her hand, see her face, hear her voice, and just simply be with her. Susan found just the right words – this is beautiful and heartbreaking.

a daughter’s prayer to god

by Susan Macaulay

dear god

please take

my mother

now and

never

 

i can’t bear to see her

suffer anymore

nor can I bear

to see her go

 

mothers and daughters

are sometimes

swallowed up

by life god

 

we push

and pull

and try

to find

our way

to détente

 

but sometimes god

dis-ease finds

us first and

renders us

unaware

 

it steals the

things we

hold dear:

thoughts

words

actions

deeds

dignity

 

what happened

to dignity god?

 

is it stuffed in your

back pocket

like a forgotten note

with a grocery list

or phone number

scribbled

on it?

 

go away god

if you can’t

keep track

of the notes

in your pockets

 

no! wait god!

come back!

i didn’t mean it

i made a mistake

 

take her now god

all these bits and pieces

and fragments of your daughter

who was once my mother

 

pluck her quick

from her drug-induced trance

 

breathe her back to life

on the other side

 

let her sing and dance

with the angels

instead of

with

me

 

free her spirit fast god

from the tangled mind

and weakening body

that imprison her

 

then again, bide your time

 

a sedated slumber

is better than a

final resting place

where I can’t

see her face

or hold

her hand

as she

sleeps

 

how can her life

end as mine began

with dirty diapers

tentative steps

gurgles

drooling

and trying to find

unknown words?

 

don’t take her now god

i will miss her

too much when

she goes

 

leave her

hand in mine

 

we can shuffle

a little further

on hell’s road

to heaven

 

we can play a duet

or two

 

i can read her stories

touch her hair

watch over her

as she did me

when I was

her baby

and she

was not

mine

 

let her stay

with me

a while longer

before you

take her home

where she longs to go

 

and when you take her god

don’t take everything

 

leave a piece

of her within reach

to accompany me

as I have

her

 

take her now god

but don’t take

her ever

i will

miss

her

so

 

Copyright Susan Macaulay

Susan Macaulay is the creator and curator of My Alzheimer’s Story. Her mother Patti was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2008 (Source http://myalzheimersstory.com/2014/05/14/a-daughters-prayer-to-god/)

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