Dignity by Donna Glossop

Added on 10/05/2013

This poem was sent to us by Donna Glossop, a specialist nurse for older people from Sheffield.

Don't wake me up, I'm dreaming,
It's still dark and that light's beaming
Please don't put your hands down there
I'm not wet, it's just not fair.
That water's cold, can't you see?
You look my way, but don't see me.
Why can't I choose my clothes today?
Come on please let me have my say
Oh no, I'm not ready to stand
Give me a minute - just hold my hand.
My mouth is dry, I'd love some tea
But I've got to wait, and then you'll see.
At last you've done, I'm clean but cold
Moved on to the next one so I'm told
I need the loo but I'll have to wait
You've gone now and it's just too late.
When you get back, I've wet my pad
But breakfast's here, so it's just too bad.
I'll have to wait, I should have said.
It's 8 o'clock "you need to be fed".
The drink is hot, the porridge cold
Give me the cup so I can hold!
But you carry on until I'm 'done'
Then you say "Well done Hun"!!!
My name is Fred! I don't think you're cruel,
But there's nothing clever in eating gruel.
Then you're gone and I'm alone
This is my lot, they call it home!
I wish you would ask about my life
If you'd listen, I'll tell you of my wife.
We loved and laughed for fifty years
So much joy, and so many tears.
Two boys were born and cherished
But both our sons before us perished.
I thought my wife and I would die
When to both of them we said goodbye.
You see you think I'm just old and grey
With no past and with nothing to say!
But I've lived, I've loved, I'm still alive!!
Though each day, gets harder to survive.
When people see me as a job
I want to crumble, lie down and sob.
We all deserve kind words and care
I was once handsome- debonair!!
Dignity is everything-my peace of mind
How can people be unkind?
I do not think you mean to be
You just don't see the real me!
A husband, father and a son,
A man whose life once was such fun.
I'd like to think when you are old
That caring staff will all be told
That everyone once was SOMEONE!
We are still here, we haven't gone
Respect each other, we all COUNT
We are all worthy, that's PARAMOUNT.