Sunday, December 21, 2008
CHRISTMAS WRITINGS 2004
GIFTS...... TIED WITH HEART STRINGS
What kind of gift do you give someone who doesn't remember who you are or what you meant to one another?
I struggled while thinking of a gift to give to Peggy this Christmas.
She doesn't want or need material things. She doesn't remember what a gift is any longer. She doesn't remember Christmas or me.
So, after a lot of thought, I decided to give her gifts that are .....Tied with Heart Strings!
I will give her the gift of my laughter.
I will give her the gift of my time.
I will give her the gift of my remembrances.
I will give her the gift of my care.
I will give her the gift of my love.
I will give her the gift of pictures.... from our past as Sister's.
I will give her the gift of my voice every day.
I will give her gifts that cost no money and are not material in any way because Christmas is a time for gifts from the heart.
The best Christmas gifts are always tied with Heart Strings!
I remember when my children were small and they gave me gifts tied with heartstrings!
They had pride and joy on their faces as they presented their gifts to me.
A hand drawn picture.
A figure molded from clay.
A hand sewn apron.
A toy Raccoon glued to a wooden spoon.
I especially loved the wad of masking tape that was covered in sparkles!
My heart sang when I received those gifts from my children's hands on Christmas' long ago.
So now, I must think of gifts to give my Sister, who is a small child again in many ways and needs........
ONLY GIFT'S TIED WITH HEART STRINGS!!!!!!!!!!
I love you Today, Peggy!
Posted by Mary Louise at 8:14 PM 4 comments
Tuesday, December 21, 2004
One of my favorite books is "The Velveteen Rabbit" by Margery Williams.
The Velveteen Rabbit is a book about becoming REAL!
A little boy received a stuffed rabbit for christmas.The rabbit was beautiful, his coat was spotted with brown and white. He had thread whiskers and his ears were lined with pink sateen.
The little boy fell in love with his rabbit. One day, the Rabbit asked the Skin Horse, the oldest toy in the nursery, What is REAL?
The Skin Horse replied..REAL isn't how you are made! It is a thing that happens to you. It happens when someone loves you for a long time, not just to play with but really loves you!
Then, said the skin horse, you become Real!
The rabbit didn't notice, as years went by, that his velveteen fur was getting shabby and his tail had become un sewn or that the pink of his nose had been kissed off, his whiskers had been loved off and the pink sateen of his ears had turned gray.
The boy thought his rabbit was still beautiful.
His rabbit had become REAL and when you are real...
Shabbiness doesn't matter.
A Loved one is forever real and beautiful.
Peggy has changed but she is still beautiful to me! She is my velveteen rabbit!
She is teaching me to be real in my everyday life.
It is difficult to be real while I watch Peggy disappear but her disappearance is helping me to emerge.
I Love You Today, Peggy.
Merry Christmas 2004
Posted by Mary Louise at 10:23 AM 2 comments
Monday, December 20, 2004
MISSING A PART OF MY HEART
My Mother had five children.
I was the first to move far away from Alabama and home. I'll never forget my first Thanksgiving away from home and family.
Later, Mother told me that there were 5 parts to her heart and a part of her heart was missing on that Thanksgiving.
Being young, I thought..Motherrrr, you had everyone else there!
It took age and gained wisdom to know exactly what she meant when she made that statement.
This Christmas, even though I have everyone that I love around me.........
A Part of my Heart is missing.
It is the place where Peggy used to live and bring joy, laughter and crazy, funny presents. Like the "chicken" that we would send to one another in our Sister gifts. No one knew from year to year who would get "The Ugly Chicken".
I really miss the chicken!
No one has gotten it in several years and so it must have been a gift to Peggy the last Christmas that she remembered.
The Chicken stopped with Peggy. Just like so many other things stopped when Peggy forgot how to remember.
This is how Alzheimer's disease is especially vicious. The person that is missing in my heart this Christmas is still alive.
Peggy just doesn't remember Christmas....
And she doesn't remember...Me!
I Love You Today, Peggy!
Sending you my Christmas Memories of "The Chicken"...with love!
Posted by Mary Louise at 11:37 AM 2 comments
Thursday, December 16, 2004
THE VELVET SHOES
It is always difficult to call Peggy and hear the flat sound of no remembrance.
It is especially difficult during the Christmas season because I remember so much. I remember all of our Christmas times and cannot give the gift of those memories to her.
If I could give Peggy one gift this Christmas it would be a pair of velvet shoes.
She could put the shoes on her feet and hear the crunching of the snow as she walked back to her memories.
The velvet shoes would leave a path of footprints in the snow that could would lead her back home again, back to the place where her memories are waiting for her.
Back to the memories of................
Christmas and back to the memories of love.
I Love You Today, Peggy!
Posted by Mary Louise at 7:26 AM 6 comments
Friday, December 10, 2004
THE MEMORY PLACE STORE
I have been shopping for Christmas and searching for the perfect gifts for those I love.
I walked through the stores at the mall and looked at all the wonderful gifts that I could buy. I took my time because these will be special gifts that will be opened on Christmas morning.
While shopping, I thought about a store that I wish existed in our mall.
It would be called "The Memory Place Store".
I could go in this shop and buy my gifts for Peggy for Christmas.
I could stroll down the isles of the Memory Place Store and buy all of her memories back, wrap them and give them to her this Christmas morning.
On Christmas morning, under her Christmas tree, there would be colorful boxes, decorated with bows and glitter and signed, Love, Mary Louise.
She could open the boxes one at a time and each would contain a group of the memories that she has forgotten.
One box would have all the stories of her childhood. Just by opening the box, her childhood memories would flood back into her brain as she sipped the coffee that she loved.
Next, she could open the gift box containing all of the memories of her teen years. She would carefully take them from the box and drape them around her neck and in a flash, all of those memories would be hers again on this special Christmas day.
Then, she would open the next three boxes. Those boxes would have the memories of her 20's, 30's and 40's wrapped in white tissue paper. She would open the boxes one at a time and have all of those memories drift back into her mind while sitting in the light of her shining, twinkling Christmas tree.
The next gift box would contain the memories of her husband, her marriage and of her children. What joy would shine from her face as she looked at them lying in the box and she could remember all of the times they spent together. She would throw the contents of the box into the air and let the memories rain down on her and bask in the glow of their love and remember each of them once again.
The last gift box would hold the memories of our parents, her sisters and her brother. She would smile and hold the box to her heart and remember the love that we all shared. She could take each memory out and hold it in her hands. She could throw the memories around like balls, bouncing them from the floor to the ceilings while laughing.
Her eyes would be shining and brimming with tears because she could remember her life and the love that was shared at Christmas time and the rest of the year.
On this special Christmas morning...The morning of miracles, Peggy could have a miracle for one day.
For this one special Christmas Day, Peggy would get 7 beautiful boxes containing gifts of the remembrances of her life.
She would open all of "The Memory Place Store" gifts that were carefully wrapped in beautiful paper and colorful bows.
She could unwrap her past and present and remember.
She would have one day to remember what it is like to love and be loved.
Peggy would know on Christmas day morning that even though her life is disappearing...
My love for her will never disappear! We gave one another the gift of our love for many Christmases.
Just because she cannot remember.... doesn't mean that I will forget!
Life may end but Love doesn't!
Merry Christmas, Peggy!
I Love You Today!
Posted by Mary Louise at 11:31 AM 2 comments
Tuesday, December 7, 2004
CHRISTMAS AND PEGGY
I miss Peggy so much at this time of year.
She loved everything about this season.
I was feeling sorry for myself while out shopping for gifts today.
I found a present that was meant for Peggy. I picked it up and for a flash of a second I thought, I will get this for Peggy.
Then reality covered me and I put the gift back with tears in my eyes.
I was feeling sad that Peggy will never celebrate Christmas again. I was sad because she doesn't even know what Christmas is, what gifts are or why we celebrate this season.
I was sad because she will miss the joy of this season...
Then, it dawned on me that my sadness was just for me!
Peggy doesn't remember anything about Christmas or the season so.....
How can she miss it?
Peggy doesn't remember or miss this season....But
I remember.... I can remember all of the Christmases, all of the joy, all of the gifts and all of the fun during the December's in our past.
Memories of Christmas are a great gift and they warm my thoughts and make me smile.
Peggy doesn't remember Christmas or have any memories of her past as she disappears from Alzheimer's...
So Maybe, just maybe...this is a gift from Alzheimer's disease.
Peggy can't be sad and miss Christmas when she doesn't remember it and what it was to us...............
She doesn't remember Mother and Daddy and how much they loved Christmas. She doesn't remember the 24th of December at 1805 St. Charles Court. She doesn't remember the night gowns we all wore every Christmas Eve.
Peggy doesn't remember what she is missing this Christmas season. I have to remind myself of that fact.
I have to remind myself that my sadness during this season belongs to me and not to her.
I am so thankful that she is not sad about missing Christmas again this year.
Peggy can't be sad over a season that.....
She doesn't remember.
I Love You Today, Peggy!
Merry Christmas 2004!
Posted by Mary Louise at 12:52 PM 5 comments
Monday, December 6, 2004