Friday, March 9, 2012

The Bedroom

One of my many tasks as a family caregiver is to help Bill when he relieves himself. When he came home six years ago, he was able to use a urinal while sitting on the side of the bed. In the middle of the night, still groggy, I pulled him into a sitting position, handed him the urinal, and waited for him to do his business. Sometimes, it took forever, and I dozed in a comfortable armchair until he was done. This happened at least once a night, sometimes twice. The following poem from How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver illustrates how this usually worked.

The Bedroom

At three in the morning,

I’m mildly aroused

by the gentle touch of his hand.

He only has one good arm and leg

but still knows how to please me.

As he strokes me,

and I breathe the scent of his sweat,

I purr with anticipation.

The mood is shattered

when he whispers, “I need to pee.”

Now, Bill can no longer balance on the side of the bed while he urinates. He has figured out how to use the urinal while lying down without making too much of a mess so all I have to do is get up and empty it when he’s done. This makes the nighttime a lot easier.

Abbie Johnson Taylor, Author of We Shall Overcome and How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver


  1. Happiness is your own music room. When I dabbled in electronic music back in the nineties, I had a room set aside in my first house for that purpose. In there, I explored sonic realms so marvelous and alien. Though I hated taking those piano lessons when I was a homesick child at Jericho Hill School for the Deaf and Blind, I found a release for my imagination through synthesizers and keyboards which I sometimes processed through guitar pedals. I never made a profit but I enjoyed creating aural landscapes of stark beauty and awesome strangeness.

    1. Hi Bruce, I also took piano lessons as a child, both at the Arizona state School and from private teachers. In college, I took voice as well as piano. Although I never dabbled in electronic music, I composed a few songs, but I never got them on paper because I never learned to read and/or write music. Thanks for posting.