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South Texas Living


‘Yesterday is Gone’


‘Yesterday is Gone’


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Rainy Days and Starry Nights
September 11, 2013
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My husband Eddie had Alzheimer’s for 10 years. By writing down my thoughts and feelings in a journal, I learned to cope with it while I cared for him at home.

After eight years he went to live in the veterans home in Floresville. I moved to Floresville to be near him. I wrote lots of poetry also, and by doing that, it made me feel warm and happy and close to God. In 2005 I wrote a poem about our life together, which I always call my golden years.



Yesterday is Gone

I think about all the things that have gone

Those times of fun and picnics and

Children playing games of tag

When my only worries were

Cut fingers and bruised knees

Scraped elbows, cries in the night

Bad dreams and “Mommy, I’m hungry”

Runny noses, peanut butter sandwiches

And Kool-Aid glasses and sunny days

With the soft breeze blowing on my brow

Hanging wet clothes on clotheslines

Watching the shadows dance on wet sheets

Those days I dreamed my dreams of tomorrow

Going to the mountains in Colorado

Vacations at Port Aransas

He’ll be home by six, and we can talk about it

Memories of children playing in the rain

With squeals and shouts of delight

While I hugged myself with joy

Over this piece of heaven on earth

I think of those trips to the hospital where he caressed

my brow

As I moaned with pain during the labor and birthing of

our four children

Those memories of tiny babies nestled

In his arms as he held the bottle to

Tiny lips as he sang a lullaby to them.

Memories flood in my thoughts of being up all night with

a crying baby

As he sleeps through, never waking up and he says to me

happily next day

The baby slept all night didn’t he?

I remember our joy of signing papers

For our very own house in the suburbs

Picking out furniture, sleek lines of blond

Danish modern, my first washing machine

After three years of living in a garage apartment

Doing the laundry in the bath tub

With a rub board to scrub them

I remember the long hours of planting grass

Watering the lawn, watching it grow

Planting spindling peach and Arizona Ash trees

He built a barbecue pit and cooked hamburgers

While the puppies and toddlers played around us

On the patio in the cool evening air as he sits

With a cigarette glowing in the dark

Listening to the ball game on his little radio

Later in the night I pick up the children

Take them to bed, saying prayers

Of “Now I lay me down to sleep,”

While he cleans up the kitchen and turns out the light

And heads for our bedroom, after stopping

By their rooms to kiss them goodnight

There were years of mornings with coffee in bed,

As he would kiss me and say “Good morning sweetheart.

Here’s your coffee! Have a good day!”

He’s off to work, while I lay there

Looking forward to another day of being a mommy

And a wife or whatever I wanted to be that day

There were so many Thanksgiving dinners

With large families and our boys watching

The football game with him and his uncles, and cousins, as he

sat patiently listening to

My daddy talk on and on and on

As the girls gossiped with their cousins

And my mother and all the women

Laughing, talking, drinking coffee or iced tea,

I call those our Golden Years

But yesterday is gone and

Today I sit next to him and he

Doesn’t remember anything about

Those sweet times together when we lay

In bed at night talking about the day and

Funny stories and tall tales and

Our plans for tomorrow and next week

Now he is in his own world and I ask him

“What are you thinking?” and he says,

“I don’t know. I can’t remember.”

So, I will never know either and I

Put my arms around him and hug him

And say, I love you, thank you for all

Those memories you gave me

Today we will walk this walk together.

He smiles at me and hugs me,

Kisses my lips and says, “I am the luckiest man in the world -- what would I do without you?”

So yesterday is gone, but

I know that today I can go on

as we walk this way together

and I won’t think about tomorrow.

Lois Zook Wauson is the oldest of eight children who grew up on a farm in Wilson County in the mid-20th century. After many years living in other parts of Texas, she now lives and writes in Floresville. Her two books are available from the Wilson County News office. Email her at loiswauson@yahoo.com.
 

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