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The Ribbon - Care for Caregivers
The Old Woman
an anonymous poem

What do you see nurses,
What do you see?
What are you thinking,
When you look at me?
Do you see~
A crabby old woman,
not very wise
uncertain of habit,
with far away eyes.

A person who dribbles her food,
and makes no reply
when you say in a loud voice,
"I do wish you'd try"

A woman who doesn't seem to notice
the things that you do,
and forever is losing
a stocking or shoe.

A person, maybe resisting at times,
lets you do as you will,
with my bathing and feeding,
and handing me my pills.

Is that what you're thinking?
Is that what you see?

Then open your eyes nurses,
cause you're not looking at me.

I'll tell you who I am,
as I sit here so still,
as I rise at your bidding,
as I eat at your will.

I'm a child of ten
With a mother and father
and brothers and sisters,
who love one another.

A young girl of sixteen,
with wings on her feet,
dreaming that soon now
a lover she'll meet.

A bride soon at twenty,
the heart gives a leap,
remembering the vows
that I promised to keep.

At twenty-five now
I have young of my own,
who need me to build
a secure, happy home.

A young woman of thirty,
my young now grow fast,
bound to each other,
with ties that should last.

At forty, the young ones are grown
and soon will be gone.
But my man stays beside me,
so I don't feel so alone.

At fifty once more,
babies play round my knee.
Again we know children,
my loved one and me.

Dark days are upon me,
my husband is dead,
I look at the future,
and I shudder with dread.

For my young ones are all busy,
rearing young of their own,
and I think of the years
and the love I have known.

I'm an old woman now,
and nature is cruel.
Nature makes old age
look like such a fool.

The body is crumbled,
grace and vigor depart.
There is now a stone
where I once had a heart.

But inside this old carcass,
a young girl still dwells.
And now and again
my battered heart swells.

I remember the joys,
I remember the pain,
and I'm loving and living
life all over again.

I think of the years,
all too few, and gone to fast,
and I accept the stark fact
that nothing can last.

So open your eyes, nurses,
open them and see,
look a little closer, nurses...
Please~~see the real ME.
 

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