Home-for-the-Aged???

Monday, May 23, 2011

I remember a conversation I had with my parents while we were on our way to a certain mall. It started out with conversations regarding our home, how they are having difficulty going up and down the stairs. My parents are in their mid-50s and are heavy built which would contribute to the difficulty. They were telling me that when couples are young, they want to build a three-story house. But when age catches on, you'd rather have a room that all on the ground floor.

I understand how they feel since I've seen how they go up and down the stairs. But that's not where the conversation ended. They were then saying how there's no home for the aged here in the Philippines, and how easy life would be if they were in that institution when they grow old. They were describing how old people in other countries seem to enjoy being in that kind of place.

I'm not a foreigner. Though my grandparents, who raised me, are pure Chinese, I was never taught to abandon old relatives no matter how insensitive they tend to be when they're very old. My great grandmother lived with my grandparents. And as far as I could remember, she sure wasn't easy to live with. But not a day goes by that I've seen her neglected. Her room was always clean. Her food was always on time. Everybody respected her despite her behavior.

I wanted to tell my parents then that I would NEVER put them in some home for the aged and let somebody else take care of them. I wanted to tell them that one reason why I was having a hard time on deciding whether to build a home of our own for my family is because of them. I didn't wanna leave them since both have medical conditions that needs attention. Whatever makes them comfortable I'm down with it. Sure they'd be shouting sooner or later, they'd be very demanding. But weren't we when we were still young? They didn't give up on us so why would I give up on them?