Sweet Release

He took her hand in his as she stepped into the street. It was warm, hot almost, and softer than she’d imagined. It distracted her for a moment and she stopped walking as she felt his palm with her thumb. He stared at her stoically as she looked down to see if it was real. She didn’t try to run, she didn’t yell for help, she didn’t fight. That’s the thing with this job – they never do.

“Is there anything…,” she cleared her throat and licked her lips. “Is there anything I can do?”

His gaze didn’t change. She could feel his eyes searching her mind. He could see into her and she could feel him pulling at her soul.

It Hurts To Say No

I’m so weak now. It surprised me every time I try to raise a glass or sit up in bed that I don’t have the luxury of independent movement anymore. That I need help doing the most simple tasks like holding a magazine and turning it’s pages. It’s these nurses jobs to help with me with things, but asking for the help never gets any less embarrassing. I’m a grown woman; I shouldn’t need someone to hold a sippy cup for me.

He brings the kids around to visit on Sunday afternoons. I told him long ago to stop, that I don’t want them remembering me like this, but he keeps bringing them. They’re old enough to know she’s sick, even that she is dying, but they don’t need to see what she’s become. A shadow of her old, boisterous self, skeletal and helpless. They should remember her full of life and vigor and joy, not like this. The man never did know how to take direction.