Saturday, August 4, 2012

How Come?

How Come?

Why did I not pay attention, really really close attention, to the actions and movements of my parents as they aged? How come? I just took it for granted that they would slow down so I didn't notice their small complaints and obvious discomforts in their late years thinking I might ever have similar ones. How come?

I would go to visit them often (130 miles from my home) and would be annoyed at their slowness, especially in the mornings, when I stayed overnight. I'm a morning person and am up and out of bed by 7:00 am, sometimes even at 
6:30 am. I would try to keep the morning news on the TV at low volume. I hoped that I didn't have to flush the toilet before they awoke. I was even hesitant to start the coffee because I thought the aroma would wake them. There is nothing like tippeetoeing around the house, waiting..... waiting..... to hear a stir coming from their bedrooms. 

After a breakfast that seemed to take forever, they would take off in their own directions to do whatever they did before being ready to face the world. Even an offer of assistance was rejected, as they had their "own ways" and NOW I UNDERSTAND!

The age of these wonderful and incredible parents, of whom I write of here, was late 80's. Hey! I'm almost there.

Mother always had to push the cart when we went to the market. Now I know why. Their canes were stored in a corner by the back door, readily handy for a venture outdoors. Their telephone ringer was turned off at bedtime so it couldn't possibly disturb their sleep. I do that too. Eyeglasses had their special places to be sure they could be found, tissues were handy throughout the rooms, and medicines were lined up in specially arranged rows for mistake-free distribution.

Many times I was asked to reach down under the countertops and retrieve items from the cupboards there. I also opened and transferred contents from jars and bottles to containers for easier access. Many items waited for my opening skills. THEN they could be consumed.

I am so glad that the loss of their mental ability wasn't a concern. Mother found volunteer work at the library and Pop had an older neighbor who came to "chew the fat" on a regular basis. Social activities were ongoing after they didn't leave their home as often as before. They seemed to be happy and quite independent, so I never saw their struggles and discomforts. How come?

 I guess the increased frailty of their bodies didn't hit me like it should have. They didn't say - I didn't ask. Now, I find we're doing the same thing! We don't let our children or grandchildren know much about the aging process in our own lives. It's a journey I don't want to share either. Will they be saying, "How Come?"


 August 12, 1994

August 12, 1999 65th Anniversary
He is 92, She is 84.


  1. We don't miss our parents until they are gone. Sad but true.

  2. I have also wondered why no one tells us about flashes....hormonal changes....decrease in bone loss....whiskers growing....I tell myself had they told me what it would be like when I got old, I might have killed myself when I was young....because I would NEVER have wanted to live with a beard!!!!! BUT, with age comes wisdom (we hope) and then we can see that life isn't just what you look like on the outside...but who you are on the inside.

    I still have my mom and I am seeing myself turning into her, and her into her mom. As a matter of fact, just tonight, I told her she sounded like my mamaw when I was talking to her.

    Your parents were married an awfully long time. That's quite an accomplishment!