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Category Archives: emotional pain

A sharp pain echoes through my heart

Before the tears begin to fall.

And in the darkness of my room

I cry.

For everything that’s ever hurt me-

And all the things that ever will,

Alone in the blackness-

I cry.

And the tears become sobs

And the sobs become screams

And the screams become prayers-

That I cry.

Are Your arms wide enough-

Is Your love strong enough-

To comfort this child

When I cry?

Let me hear Your gentle words

Let me feel Your presence here.

Let me know I’m not alone-

As I cry.

But You are strangely silent

And I feel no arms around me

As I call out Your name

And I cry.

I wail until my heart is empty-

Till crystal pain no longer flows.

And fall asleep among the teardrops-

That I cried.

Your angels sang a lullaby-

Your gift of tears- a sweet release,

And You were with me all the while

I cried.            

Lonnette Harrell

Last night I cried, because I thought about my mother, as I often do. I know she must be sinking farther and farther into dementia, and I can’t do anything about it. I love her and miss her, and I wish things had ended differently. (But I guess she made her choice also.) I wish I could comfort her, in that far-away place she now dwells. How can you be angry with someone who is now probably like a confused child?

I cry because I remember her fear of dementia, and her fear of having to live that way. I cry because I tried so hard to care for her and please her, and she called me hateful names (while she was still in her right mind.) I cry because I’ve always loved her, and I just wanted her to love me back.

I cry because I wish that I could soothe her fears, and I can’t. All of this is progressing so rapidly, and I could see it plainly awhile back. We were told that it would not get better. I knew that her care needs were more than I could handle anymore, and I was already 3 1/2 years into total exhaustion, and sick myself. There should be no shame in saying that I could not continue on as I was. I simply could not. I knew that I was going to die.  But my brother didn’t get it. Now maybe he will.

How frightening it must be, to be trapped in your very physically ill body, losing your mind. It seems like some kind of cruel nightmare, that has no ending. She was so afraid of becoming like the people we saw in the halls of the nursing home (where she was for 5 1/2 months of rehab.) I always reassured her, and tried to help her through her confusion, and prayed that it would pass. It really accelerated after her hip surgery. She was never really the same after that, and we were warned by the Ortho doctor that many elderly people are affected that way by the anesthesia.

And now I can’t get to her. She might as well be in a castle with a drawbridge and a moat, instead of a small house in a small town with my angry brother, and a caregiver. She’s isolated. She probably wouldn’t want to see me anyway.

And I could not go back without becoming totally involved in her care, and I am not physically able to do that anymore. I have been very sick lately, and I just can no longer take the stress of her care, or of her emotional treatment of me. 

That is why she was so much better off in the Assisted Living, where she could get socialization, food she loved, and medical assistance and supervision.  There was a Memory Care Unit there as well, if she needed it later on. But my brother was determined to bring her home, and now he is probably overwhelmed as well. (You cannot possibly know what it is like to care for all her needs until you’ve done it. I could not keep up anymore, and the stress of it all was killing me.) I needed help desperately.

I can only reach her through my prayers. I ask God to comfort her, and strengthen her. I ask Him to take care of her, as I no longer can. I ask Him to soften her heart towards me, and let her memories be of our happy times together (and there were quite a few, in spite of our problems.) I ask God to tell her I love her.

But when I can’t take the pain in my heart anymore, I cry…

Whenever there is controversy, it is always interesting to see who supports you, and comes to your defense. Often the ones that you thought would stand up for you, don’t. And the ones you never expected would, do. It’s an eyeopener for sure.

I have to say that I am going through one of those times in life when I am just plain weary. Weary of cruel people, weary of fighting, weary of people who hurt others for no reason. Just weary.

I am emotionally very, very low, watching my mom go through her physical and mental decline. I’ve never really had much chance to grieve the loss of both of my fathers.  (My birth dad, and my step-dad since I was 7 years old, died close in time to each other.) I had a lot more contact with my step-dad, (day in and day out), and he gave me away at my second wedding, though my bio dad attended. I miss him so much. He always had answers for things that needed fixing, and there are surely so many things that need fixing now. My whole life feels broken in two.

I have had to hit the floor running, without a break, through his long, heartbreaking illness in the hospital (from complications of triple bypass) and my mom’s declining state. There are days that I feel that I have forgotten to breathe. And others that I breathe too fast. My heart hurts, both from the challenges I am facing, and from the mean remarks that I have received in the past few days from people that I cared about.

That brings us back to friends. It seems that as women, we so often hurt each other. Men are rarely as vicious. Women compete with each other, are jealous of each other, and are sometimes just plain mean to each other. If we dissolved our marriages over the things we dissolve our friendships over, no one would be married for long. At least in a marriage, we learn to try and work things out, and continue on.

But there are times in other relationships that it just isn’t possible. Too much has been said, too many painful things have occurred, and we cannot continue.

I remember a friend I had many years ago. I loved everything about her! I loved the way she decorated her home, and how she brought out in me all the femininity that was longing for expression. I found myself, through her unique style. I used to say, “….that is so you.” And she would answer, “No-it is so you.” (And it was.) I developed my own unique style. I found myself also in the pages of the older Victoria magazine. Lace thrown here and there, roses, candles, teapots and teacups,  and lots of girly things. Bless his heart, my husband has tolerated it well. (He finds it sexy.) LOL!

But one day something happened to our friendship. It’s funny, it happened on a trip with another woman. Have you ever noticed with little girls that when there are three, they tend to end up two against one? It happened with us, and it led to another hurtful confrontation through our church, and she was involved in an outright betrayal (lies) that nearly destroyed me. I did not want to have another close female friend after that for a long time, because it was just so painful. Devastatingly painful. After the sordid scene, I remember lying in bed for days, and crying and not being able to sleep. I was not as strong then as I am now. I had not yet experienced life at its cruelest, though few things have ever hurt me as badly as that whole scenario. (Because I was partaking of His sufferings, I also felt the strong presence of my Lord, as I do now.)

Try as I would, things could never be mended. In a way, I didn’t want to lose her. I was longing for the friendship that we once had, but realizing that it could never be again. (Too many hurtful words, too many hurtful actions.) Being a Christian, I knew that I would have to find a way to forgive. And I eventually did. But it didn’t happen overnight. I hurt for a long, long time.

 I try now to focus on the good things that she brought into my life, instead of the ending of our relationship. That is what I will try to do now with the ugly situation I find myself in. I do not regret my role as Moderator in this grief group, and for two years, I pray that I showed compassion and love to grieving people who desperately needed, (as Dr. Phil says), “a soft place to fall.” Because of the hurt that has occurred, (and the attacks that are still going on), that season in my life has ended. I simply cannot continue. I have had at least one there accuse me of  just quitting. Perhaps so, but I cannot be a part of something that has a wrong spirit. How could I ever feel the same in my position there again? My life is so complicated right now with my mom’s condition, my daughter, and my own very bad health, that I think I would be hurting myself, and contributing further to the stress in my life (which is already overwhelming). I simply cannot go on there. Like the friendship I just recounted, there are some painful situations that cannot be mended, and I feel this is one of them. In time, I will be able to forgive completely, because I don’t want to become as sick and angry as my attackers. I wish them the best. Forgiveness, like most things in life, is a process. Forgiveness is not simply sweeping something under the rug, as if it never happened. First you have to identify the hurt, acknowledge that it hurt terribly, and then day by day try to come to terms with it, until finally you can release it. It is definitely a process, not an overnight occurrence.

I pray that I am getting stronger. My heart has hurt (a continuous ache) for several days, and I have cried a few tears, and have been nauseated, but I have not given in to complete depression. I feel that I followed my heart, which was to help someone, spoke up when I saw her cruelly mistreated, and stood up to the attacks that soon followed against me. I will no longer try to defend myself. (There are none so blind as those who will not see.) Nothing else I can say to them would make a difference at this point. I did answer their hurtful accusations, because this time I was strong enough to stand up for myself. I don’t regret that part. It felt right, honest, and Godly.

I will process my hurt here, in my blog. A place where I can pour out my heart, never knowing who is or is not reading my thoughts. That part is insignificant to a degree. The important thing is to get the thoughts out. That is how I will heal. We all need to be understood, or heard in some way. As a writer, I cannot hold my feelings in. This is the healthy way for me to process grief. Write it out.

If anyone is hurting, I will be here for you. I understand, and I will never be cruel to you, and that makes us comrades on this painful journey of life…

While this is typically a song for a couple, I think it captures true friendship as well. If only we all had such a dedicated friend.