Nov 19, 2007

The Golden Years

Do you wonder what goes through the mind of an elderly person when he or she sits and watches the world go by?

There’s this old man that sits at a nearby hawker center every morning. All he does is drink his coffee and stares into blank space. I’ve got a soft spot for old folks and I had the opportunity to ask him this question one morning. “Uncle, is everything ok? What are you thinking about?” The old man looked at me, smiled and said, “Nothing ah-boy. Just thinking about old days...”

Most of the folks in the neighbourhood call me ah-boy. They have been calling me that for years and quite frankly, I don’t mind it.

I’ve got parents that are aging and I worry most about my dad. It’s never easy for someone to go through a stroke. Imagine having to go through it 3 times. There’s a saying that worrying doesn’t bring you anywhere. How do you not worry when you love a person?

I found this website called Bettercaring. It’s an awesome website for those of us that are taking care of elderly folks. Bettercaring is a dedicated service for anyone who needs answers to crucial questions about care for themselves or their loved one. Their website is update with daily care news and there’s a forum that allows users to discuss their own experiences and you’ll receive tips from care experts.

In the United Kingdom, a nursing home is known as a care home. I don’t know about you but I’ll never send someone I love to a nursing home. I would have them at home. It isn't easy but it beats being apart from them. With online guidance & tips from websites like Bettercaring, it somehow makes things a little better.

At the end of the day, it’s about giving back what they have been giving to us all these years. It wasn’t easy bringing us up and it sure isn’t easy taking care of them when they're old. Ain’t it funny how life comes one full circle?

10 comments:

  1. I know what you mean when you say it's hard to see someone you love go through something like that.

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  2. Hi Min-tea, i guess lots of us are going through the same thing. I'm trying to find this video that I once saw on youtube. It's touching to say the least...

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  3. you have to stay positive and only by doing that will you also assure them that you are doing fine and will be okie taking care of yourself. our parents worries will always be their children no matter how old they are. Have you read "Tuesday with Morrie", read it if you haven't because you will be able to relate your situation better, I went throught the same thing too.... watching my own parents grow older and older everytime I see them. stop worrying and embrace the moments you can create with them now. dont think about how they will leave you. just love them now. thats the only thing you can do for them. the rest is in the hands of god.

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  4. easier said than done, noel.

    we're living in such a high cost country. especially in the lower income groups, sometimes the middle aged folks have to go out to work to support their children and their parents and nobody is left to look after the elderly. they have to either hire a maid or send them to a care center.

    moreover, some elderly are sickly and require special attention and if there is nobody to do that at home, then care centers are a good option because most of them are equipped to deal with aging health conditions.

    there are some care centers especially in usa that the elderly prefer to go to because there are friends to be made and activities to keep them busy.

    unless you have a very close knit, loving family, an elderly person can feel quite lonely at home hence you see them at the coffee shops sitting and reminiscing.

    i think care centers is not a matter of filial piety vs shirking responsibilities. there is so much more to it and in some instances, it can be the better option than looking after them at home.

    sending parents to a home for the aged is not abandonment.

    but the way my parents are, they'd rather live alone and be sent money every month. hahahaha...

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  5. wow ladies!! very long comments. i'll keep things short by saying I agree with the both of you. i enjoy talking to old folks at the coffee shops. they're actually fun people to talk to.

    when i'm old, i wanna spend my time in a pub!

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  6. hi, do you need penis enlarger?

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  7. whats the diff between pub and coffee shiops??? or the tattoo shop also quite fun... the young kids will be wondering what you old man doing there. heee......

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  8. to anonymous: sure...send one over. the longer the merrier! moron!!!

    to nekobud: well, pubs play good music. coffee shops have tv's that are always tuned to channel 8. tattoo shops can be fun. i figure that by the time i'm old, i'll be completely covered with tattoos. it'll be depressing to hangout out at a tattoo shop and you can't get inked!

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  9. my fren's dad told me this before and i thought it was very profound.

    he said as a parent, you should never expect or take it as a given that when your children grow up they will take you in and take care of you. just because you took care of and provided for them till they're fully grown up doesn't give you the right as a parent to expect that they'll return the favor when you're of age.

    all you can do is give them the proper upbringing and instill the right values, and hope to god they'll do the right thing when the time comes.

    that was really food for thought for me then. it has stuck with me since. and in a funny way, it did make sense. i donno...it's just one of the most profound things anyone has ever said.

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