Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Unshaven, Unique, and Ugly

Here is My A To Z Challenge. An adventure. My attempt at telling you my story. I care for my husband who has end-stage Parkinson's disease.
We have good days and we have bad days. Hope you will follow along....A TO Z!

This unshaven man with whom I live.
Has a heart as big as our world. 
He loves me so much. He tells me often.
I am not sure I am as worthy as all that.
I had to learn to use that razor.
It's not as easy as it looks.
I tell him to please make all those faces.
So I can get into the many crooks.
A haggard face has shriveled wrinkles and grooves
Where white stiff hairs can hide.
I don't shave him daily.
But we get it done when needed.
That is just how we ride.

He is such a unique man, I know.
His kindness is known to all.
He made some personality changes.
But we still love him so.
Things he used to like, now he doesn't.
His family has learned to roll
With the punches.
Sometimes he's happy and sometimes he's sad.
But he is always unique.
It's just that now with the Parkinson's 
His joints just creak and creak.
I cannot force him to straighten an arm or a leg.
Or lift his head up high.
It's frustrating when I am trying to dress him.
By the seat of our pants we fly.

There is so much ugliness that accompanies a disease.
More than the public ever sees.
Often we keep those parts to ourselves.
And paste on a smile for the strangers out there.
I love his uniqueness. We all have our own.
Mine has merged with his. He's not all alone.
When I talk I say "we" and "us" when I mean
"he" or "I"
It's just that we've become blended.
Me and this guy.
Even unshaven I never see him as ugly.
Even when his words are sharp or mean.
He's just my husband. The one I care for.
And that's  good enough for me


  1. I think you summed it up really well with your last line "that's good enough for me". Another blog I follow has a husband with dementia; she at times has to shave him if their volunteer care giver is not available. I can't imagine trying to shave my husband. I admire you that try!


    1. It was part of my nurse's training although mostly the CNA's did that. It is a challenge. We use an electric razor. I think a blade would be easier, except for the annoying days and then God help me......just kidding!

  2. Hi Paula .. this is a lovely post - you've expressed it well .. and the last six lines are wonderful .. and ring so true as to your love for 'this guy' - you've certainly adapted to his life as best you both can .. you really have expressed lots of love here ... with thoughts and thanks for sharing ... Hilary

    1. I guess that is what marriage is all about, huh, Hilary?

  3. It's the good understanding that you share, which makes life unique and beautiful, flushing away the ugliness :)

    1. Sometimes I have no understanding at all...

  4. Your husband sounds like a wonderful man. You are a great example of a loving wife!

    1. He, for the most part, was the best husband I could have ever asked for!

  5. You have a beautiful soul and this was a wonderful, meaningful, caring, special tribute to your husband.

  6. You sound like you love each other so much. That's something to look forward to for us newly married folk. Does almost 3 years count as newly married? I think it should. :)

    1. Yes that is pretty newly married!! Richard and I will be married 18 years this summer, but we have been together 36 years this summer. We grew in our love over the years

  7. So beautiful. You are in the thick of it...and I have to say, I pray my dad passes (he's 90) before we get much further into Parkinson's. It scares me what we will be facing. My prayers go out to you. You are a wonderful witness to how to care for a loved one.

    1. Thank you so much Mare. How long has your dad had Parkinson's? We are in the final stages. My husband is 81!

  8. this is really beautiful...the end put a couple tears in my eyes. I could feel the love you have for your husband.

    1. Thank you so much! And thank you for coming back to visit

  9. Isn't it wonderful how love softens - even blurs - one's eyesight?
    ... and the greatest of these is Love. No-one and nothing can take that away!

    1. I have always tried to live by the belief that "beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder". I tell my grand daughter not to always expect the most handsome boy is going to be the nicest. She's only 14 right now so she can't see past their beauty yet

  10. There is so much insight for awareness of this disease with your posts. I am happy to have come across your blog. I have learned a lot with your "diary" of life with it, and all done with and through Love. Hugzzz!

    Katy Did

    Life's Ride In Between

    1. Thank you Katy. I have learned as well. It is not the same journey to be a nurse as it is to deal with the 24/7 of being a wife

  11. Paula - this is such a loving post. I cannot imagine how difficult this is for your husband and you. Illnesses don't just affect the patient, they have profound impact on the loved ones whose lives are also changed forever. It is part of our vows "in sickness", but I have often wondered how I'd fare when the inevitable happens. Not only is the daily care challenging and never-ending, but the changes to personality, loss of vitality... they all change the person we knew and loved. You are so courageous to show your anger, frustration, duty and infinite support and love to us, and I take strength from your journey.

    1. I am glad that I can offer you some strength and inspiration!


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