Life is beautiful when we have healthy relationships surrounding us. In our short spans here we make a lot of relationships, one of which is the one we have with our parents. People who bring us to the world and who care and protect us till we are able to do that on our own and even after that. In time we get to care for them.
Aging is a natural phenomenon but still a daunting one for many. Aging doesn’t just bring challenges for the old but for we grown up children as well who need to help them through it. Here’s a list of 5 things that we can do to make it easier for them:
LOVE: Sounds clichéd right and you may argue it’s not a thing. But honey that’s just it, it is THE thing. No matter what stage of life, we all need love in its various forms. Due to circumstances like concepts of being embarrassed or being reprimanded, in this age people get aloof and lonely. This can lead to depression and decline in health. If you want to make things better show your parents you love them, you are there for them out of that love and not some sense of duty or obligation. Make sure they have ‘their’ people around them, friends and others to laugh with, share their memories with, to have some quality time with.
Control/Freedom: Just because they are old doesn’t mean they are incapable of handling their life. I understand that as children we have a strong desire to protect our parents and keep them safe. But let’s not overwhelm them with it. In our zealous efforts sometimes we start living their life for them. This is a double whammy, any which ways our parents have to deal with a lot of things being out of their control, if we steer their life as well we ignore their right to feel the exuberance of independence. I know there will be some decisions we have to take for them, but make those a discussion including them. For the rest things, leave it up to them, strike that fine balance.
Financial Aspect: Of course it can’t be ignored. It’s essential to mental peace having the financial affairs in order. So work with them to see how set they are to stay comfortably. If need be pitch in, if not set aside an emergency fund for them, which may be used to fulfill their dreams as well.
Routine Check-Ups: With aging comes the deterioration in health. We can ease out the physical aspect by making sure they go for routine check-ups, everything from eye check up to hearing, heart, blood pressure, sugar, basically the whole rigmarole.
Being Patient: At this juncture, it’s common for our parents to feel lost or be forgetful. In situations like these, I know it’s tough but we have to deal with them patiently. Our impatience or reacting to such situations is a roadblock that makes this journey harder than we can imagine. Try different ways to convey your message.
There will be more challenges to face, but if we can work on these essentials I assure you, you will make this phase of your parent’s life a golden era. Growing old is a privilege not offered to many, so let’s make sure we help our parents live it.