Attempting to Accept Aging Parents (Originally Posted on 2blkgrls blog)

I’ve been back living at home with my mother and step-father for a little over a year now and I’m noticing things about them that I am sure has happened while I was away. It makes me laugh when I have to constantly try to explain different technologies to them. My mom is now a pro at turning on laptops, getting on the Internet and logging into her email account, but she still can’t figure out how to copy and paste or upload a document. My step-dad always has a cooler phone than I do, but aside from placing calls and text messages, he’s clueless on how to save contacts and change ringer profiles. Typical “old people” stuff.

As of late I find myself either bored to death or fearful of death when I am in the car with them. My mom, specifically, has a thing for driving slow in the fast lane and fast in the slow lane. I’m confused. She’s in a rush in no traffic and relaxed when we’ve got somewhere to be during rush hour. During one of these rides I realized two things; one, I really need to get a car ASAP and just run errands for her and two, my mom is really aging now.

It causes me to look back on all of the times I called my parents old when in fact they were young. I remember my little cousin and I having a debate with my mom and uncle (his dad). We were talking about them being old, their old ways, and the progression happening all around us that they weren’t ready for. Both sides had valid points, although I didn’t agree back then.

But coming home and seeing the salt and pepper hair (or lack of hair), the tired eyes, the forgetfulness and short attention spans really saddens me. We like to tease our elders about aging, but what happens next? And thinking about what happens next can be scary (at least for me). This realization of age and attempting to accept the fact that my parents have aged constantly reminds me that life truely is too short.

-Viola Constance


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