I know what I want to discuss in my Bodyscapes session. I am not going to talk about your father’s Parkinson’s Disease. It’s bigger than that. It’s all we’re facing and WILL face in the future. Aging will be my topic.”
The words to create my mother’s poem fell into place easily. Aging lead to maturity which brought us to the idea of growing into certain characteristics associated with growing older and wiser. Her intention was to focus on what inner-emotional skills she will need when her role as care-taker will involve additional responsibilities of health and home. She wanted to search for meaning during this “unpleasant business of aging. Diana,” she informed. “Aging is not for the weak.”
Webster’s Dictionary defines aging with several meaning. My mother picked out the words, to bring into a state fit for maturity and life development. The definition to the word, maturity, revealed the words, in a cycle of life changes. Cycle lead to a sequence of recurring events. Sequence lead to coherent relations between. During a Bodyscapes session, we talk about how the words we have just picked out from the dictionary have direct meaning to the client’s life. I listen and reflect words or images which the client has repeated. “Your father and I feel bewildered by aging.” Mom and I looked up the word, bewildered, which lead to puzzlement, which lead to questioning a problem, trusting and ingenuity. The definition of ingenuity brought us to the words, cleverness and aptness. “I am ready to write my statement,” Mom declared.
Aging II by Antonietta Sciarretta
My maturity is needed during our new life changes. I must have consideration and coherent relationships with my husband, children and grandchildren. The next part of our lives will require determination, cleverness and ingenuity to solve health and household problems. As we age, I will need to balance our needs for our health, daily living and well-being with the physical ability to lead a safe and happy life.
My mother is a non-professional artist. That means she has a natural ability to draw, has taken art classes throughout my childhood and continues to paint anything from canvases to flowerpots. “The creation of the poem was meaningful, DD. But, I can’t wait to start the drawing. I will use the image of the wings from the poem I wrote in the middle of the night after your uncle’s Bodyscape session.” (Read blogpost, “After a Bodyscapes session…”, October 24th, 2013 and blogpost, “I reduce the useage…”, October 16, 2013. ) Aptly, my mother sketched lines to create wings. She began layering shades of blue, first dark, then medium and finally light blue. Steadily, she worked for two hours. Realistic looking wings are quite hard to create. We worked side by side, talking about how to create the feeling that the wings were wrapping around the golden-yellow core. I smiled, deep in gratitude. Mother and I still love to draw together as when I was a kid.
“The blue wings are ‘the wings of the song’ from my first poem, Aging I. (Read below) The golden-yellow center, like the body of a butterfly, is my God center. It is my core from which I will draw for my new life changes. On the left are clusters of colored dots. The top cluster of red dots is me and below is your father. On the right side, the cluster of dots represent you, your brother, your sister, their spouses and our three grandchildren.
Aging I, by Antonetta Sciarretta, 2013
It comes slowly, on the wings of song. With God’s loving care, our songs were of great melody for many happy years. The songs were filled with the sounds of wedding bells, the patter of tiny feet, the laughter and smiles of small faces, the sound of applause at graduations and then again wedding bells and the patter of tiny feet. The flight of the wings came slowly, an unwanted wrinkle, an annoying grey hair. The wings gained speed. The songs became an opera of prostate cancer, Parkinson’s disease. And for me, a symphony of hip replacement and a stint. Now, the music is the rock and roll of annoying ailments, doctors visits, medicines, our sadness for the loss of vitality, stamina and the general ease of living.
Gratefully, the wings that carry our song are loving wings and the songs remain filled with beautiful melodies. Our hearts rejoice to love and be loved by our children, grandchildren, and the enjoyment of the companionship of dear friends. We are ever grateful to our God who has blessed us with this wonderful and long life.
The Red & Orange House relies on support from individual donors to maintain our work in hospitals and other healthcare facilities. Each gift brings another art-making experience to a patient’s bedside or their family while sitting in the family surgical waiting room. Donor benefits include a weekly subscription to our upcoming newsletter. You can share in the powerful healing moments experienced by program participants and their families.
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