Growing old. I can’t really imagine it. I mean, I am growing older with every passing second, (I’m like 10 seconds older since I started this post!) but I can’t imagine actually being old. It must be awful.
No, not because of wrinkly faces or white hair (or no hair, in some cases) or even the aches, hypertension, diabetes, or whatever ailments make an appearance once you hit 60, but because its so hard for people to care about you. Once you’re old, even your children don’t appreciate you. It must so so horrible, just lying down, day after day, waiting to die. It must be horrible!
My grandparents are really old. I still see them in my minds eye as the strong people who played with me or told me stories when I was a kid. But when I actually, physically see them, I see two really frail, stick thin people who can barely walk a few feet. My grandma has lost her memory and its heartbreaking to see her repeat herself endlessly and forget she had her meals. Its even worse to see other people, even her son, getting really annoyed that she forgets things. Its not her fault. But people still get really mad and yell at her for saying the same things 15 times. Its so sad.
My granddad is a writer. I like to think I got the writing bug from him. Throughout my childhood, he was the scary man who used to sit at the desk in his room (which I wasn’t allowed into) and keep writing in his book. I’ve never seen him type. He wrote everything down in paper. Now, he is the scary man who’s always lying down in bed, to tired to sit up for more than a few minutes. He was fiercely independent. But old age has forced him to change all that about himself. He now waits for his son to give him food and water and for all basic necessities.
It pains me to see such proud, independent people depend on other for everything. It hurts them to feel like a burden too. But they don’t have a choice. Their son gets annoyed with all the care they need, because he doesn’t have to energy to deal with them. Not that its his fault. He’s getting along in the years as well (he’s well over 50.) Living long seems like a good idea. But I’m not sure I really want to remain dependent on others, who will eventually start to resent me.
Old age is a painful affliction, in more ways than one. I wish there was a way we could re-instill a feeling of joy in old people. But all they have right now is perpetual boredom, lack of people to talk to and a fading will to live.