Being foolishly stubborn, refusing to abide by rules, feeling insecured and stopping at nothing to get some attention are traits we normally associate with kids. While they are all true, we also know that, considered as childhood revisited, old age displays these very shenanigans. Unfortunately, they are even more pronounced the second time round.
Last two days have been nothing less than a walk on the rope for all of us, what with the (painfully adamant) big old lady child of the house refusing to skip visiting relatives and not paying the slightest heed to her diabetes and blood pressure diet and medicines while gorging on everything from chaklis and gulab jamuns to fried papads and laddoos.
Doesn’t voluntarily ignoring your daily critical medical prescriptions imply that you are more or less inviting a disaster? With three kids in the house and endless rounds of places we have to mark our attendance at, are we to be blamed entirely for not monitoring the only thing she has to keep track of in the whole day?
Yes, old age and childhood are similar in many ways, but one thing that is markedly different is the guilt factor we have to face. With kids the guilt comes from within us since we feel responsible for those little beings, but the guilt-inducing jabs elders make on us despite everything we do for them are the truly punishing ones.
Why aren’t we told beforehand that what they did for us as kids was merely for reciprocation? Was this why we were brought into this world? Did we ask for it? Shouldn’t being accountable for our own health be our own call?
Loving our children is one thing and expecting them to tiptoe around us day in and day out is another. Ignoring the signs of the depleting immunity of our body and then holding everyone else at ransom for leading them to it has no semblance of logic to it. Whatever we do, no one can breathe or live for us right?
I know I wouldn’t want to be bedridden and dependant on anyone for anything in my old age, God forbid. We can’t predict future, but we can definitely follow a healthy lifestyle and give our body the love and respect it deserves. It is never too late to start and is our first and foremost duty towards ourselves.