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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Some Things I Had To Do

Some things I had to do
Like though still very much terrified, fearful of his volatility

Had to
Be the one to
Pick him up at his sister’ s house for an appointment
Had to open the door
And instead of seeing him ready to go
Had to see first hand
The chaos of his mind
Displayed in the living room he had slept in

Had to wake him
Sleeping sideways on the top of the couch
Against the wall, not on the cushions
Had to help him to his feet
Had to walk him rambling to the bathroom
Had to lift the shirt over this head
As you would do with a child
Had to help him lift his knee
And guide his naked body
Into the shower
Had to turn on the water
And a second later, seeing him standing there
Had to tell him to pick up soap and rub it on his skin
Had to help him lift his knee
And step out of the shower

Had to dry him
Had to dress him
Had to brush his teeth
Had to tie his shoes

Had to sit him at the kitchen table
Had to tell him to wait there
While I cleaned up the living room
Had to push furniture back into place
Had to gather up peed in socks
Had to put the room back in order
And as I cleaned
Had to tell him we don’t have time
To eat breakfast here
But that we’d stop at a drive through on the way to program

Had to look over and see him
Hand to mouth
Feeding himself
Imaginary breakfast
With imaginary food

Had to take ten minutes
To walk him down
One flight of stairs
He unable to move fast
Back against the wall
On the stairwell
The chaos in his mind winning

Had to make sure he swallowed the pills
Meant to help him
But that were hurting him

Had to walk him late into program
Put him slouched into a chair
Bring his med strip to the nurse
Say “he is in bad shape and this is what he is taking”
And leave
Knowing later I’d have to pick him up
And bring him home
Because this was after all
The state he was in
When the hospital opted to
Release him
Imagine his state before release

I had to do all these things
In a day
And so much more
The other days

Had to stuff my feelings away
And do

So now all this time later
When things come up
That I’d rather not relive or figure out just now
I don’t

Because when there was so much I had to do
I did it
And did it well

But I don’t have to do it any more
And that freedom
The freedom to honor my instincts
And listen to my own voice
And do what I know is best for me