Wednesday, February 24, 2010


It's hard to watch parents growing old. Trying to cope with the change is tougher. My parents are having trouble doing the things they used to handle effortlessly. They face memory glitches, repeat themselves, are tired easily and often sick. I am guilty of feeling impatient, and at times angry at them and finish feeling dim about it.

When they call while I am at work and repeat themselves, I promptly cut it off by saying "Yeah, you've told me that before", or promise to call back once I'm home. As we age we no longer wish to share our ordeals with parents sparing them the stress that we'd rather deal with on our own. There is a lack of things to talk about, and therefore a repeat conversation is likely to be some sort of a connection or interaction for them. I read that the point of talking to people isn't to receive information in the form of words; it's the pleasure of the interaction and expression of sharing and trusting.

So, I tell myself that listening over and over again, or simply receiving the interaction, is not really so hard to do. But I feel sorry for the way I act sometimes with my parents.

Sorry Ma. Sorry Dad. I hope you will understand.

PS: Pansies mean 'thoughts', so these ones in my garden just for my parents.


  1. Your pansies are beautiful and can't help but make one smile. I am facing the same thing with my parents, especially my father. It is so true that we don't want to tell them things that would stress them out. I also find that I have to repeat things. Flowers definitely do help!

  2. As caregiver for each of my parents until their passing and now my husband I surely understand. Mid to late afternoons seem to be worst for the aging. Perhaps if you could get them to watch a particular show or listen to music or a book on tape at the time of day that they call you most often at work. They might also enjoy feeling useful again. Once mother's mind got so bad, she enjoyed folding clothes for me (she never knew it was the same towels over and over). Is there a senior center in your area where they could go daily to meet with folks their age, have a meal. If I can help at all, please feel free to email me. I know it's difficult. May God bless.

  3. Your words are beautiful and moving, and rings so true. I have lived far from my parents for almost 2 decades, we have very little in common, and were never really on the same page. I get annoyed when my dad talks about the weather, but really, there isn't all that much more to say. One of my inlaws is dealing with advanced alzheimers, the confusion is difficult to cope with. Sorry this got so long and personal, your post really got to me.

    The pansies are beautiful, I always think they are smiling.

  4. Hi UG, it's hard seeing loved ones grow old and I totally understand where you are coming from. Don't be too hard on yourself. Take care, Ev

  5. I know it's difficult at times but we are the only ones who can make our parents happy so we should give them all we can.
    Those pansies are lovely!

  6. omg....this is like i am reading myself... my mom is 73 and i sometimes feel like telling her she's repeating herself... i lose patience, i cut her off...and i feel guilty.... i loved that description of the point of talking... yes... i hope i will be able to remember this the next time i feel impatient...thank you for sharing this

  7. Gorgeous Pansies. My parents are in their 80's so I understand perfectly.

  8. It is natural that you do get irritated sometimes. Only make sure to let them know that you appreciate how much they have done for you and that you love them. I think that is all they want at that stage.
    First time here - Lovely blog.

  9. Even though my parents aren't that old, I still have noticed signs of them beginning to seem older to me. I admit that like you, there are some times I feel impatient and then guilty for being that way. I'm sure you are a very good daughter to them, and they know you love them.
    I love the Pansies, that first purple one sparkles.

  10. It is certainly difficult to see parents grow old. I have only my mum around now. I thank God for health everyday. Love the pansies you have posted here. Nature, flowers have a way to calm us down whenever we are stressed :-D Have a great weekend.

  11. Oh dear - sadly neither of my parents lived to get to that point. But my grandmother did and so I know what it's like. These days it's more likely to be me ... :(

  12. I know just exactly what you are talking about with aging parents. I feel so guilty about my Mum and my Dad is gone now but I still think of him all the time. Now my children are grown I miss them terribly when they are not here, so I am beginning to see the other side of the coin.
    I thought you might like to meet my blogging friend Tootsie. She is on my blog side bar as "Tootsie Time" and hosts a prompt called Friday Fertilizer which I take part in when I can. I reckon you would like it.

  13. Hello,
    browsing through for the first time...

    Thank you for your wise words on the elderly, next time my mother-in-law calls I will be more patient!

    Cheers from Stockholm, Sweden

  14. not looking forward to having my parents age...scares me...your pansies are gorgeous...I planted mine this there is nothing up yet!

  15. Pleasure to read your posts as always. Lovely pansies.

  16. The pansies are so beautiful, a good reminder of the fragility of life, and how precious it is. Do remind yourself that one day it may be you that repeats themselves. My parents have both been gone for a very long time, if only I could just hear one word, any word from their voices....think of that next time, as though it is the last conversation you will ever have with them. You will be patient and kind.

  17. I hope these pansies brighten up your day as it did mine. When we are working and have children to care for, there are often lots of things on our mind. Some kind of irritation from loved ones makes us snap, which we regret later. Do take time to relax and rejuvenate. It is good for the body and soul. I can see that you care a lot for your parents. What yo do now will become the foundation from which pleasant memories are built for a lifetime to remember. I have lost both parents. Many simple things such as folding and ironing clothes, songs, cooking method reminds me of them.

  18. @kate: gardening is therapeutic, isn't it?
    @mildred: thanks a lot. at the moment, the situation is in control. thanks again. much appreciated.
    @rebecca: cheer up. *this too shall pass*
    @Ev: thanks dear.
    @Chandramouli: Totally agree. thanks..
    @Arundati: thanks for stopping by.
    @Hermes:*Urban Green sighs*
    @Radha: Rightly said. Thanks for stopping by, and appreciating my blog
    @Catherine: Such is life....thanks for visiting my blog
    @Stephanie: True, nature heals...
    @Sue: *urban green sighs*
    @Linda: well, well....and thanks for suggestion on tootsie time...i never get around to doing it, will keep in mind this friday
    @Trädgårdsmakare Hillevissan: thanks for stopping by.
    @tootsie: am looking forward to pictures of your spring garden
    @raj: thanks..*urban green bows*
    @frances: I know what you mean, and it makes me worse that they will not be around forever.
    @Autumn: thanks, it feels better.

  19. It is very difficult to see our parents as "old", because they were the strong ones for us when we were young and that memory of the strong ones remain in our memories. It is quite a shock to see them as frail, forgetful at times people. We get angry because we do not want to see them in that state. We do not want the replace the picture in our minds of how they used to be to what they are now. We love them but we do not want them to grow old we wish they would remain the same forever.

  20. When i read this post, i thought i wrote it. It's good to know I'm not alone in my thoughts.

  21. dear aunty your blog is awesome and your plants are so beautiful.I came across this while browsing for some plants to put up in my bare balcony....I was deeply touched by this post,more so cause I lost my granny who raised me ,few months back... She was a solid pillar in my life on whom I used to lean for support often... After reading this I feel some peace about the fact that I used to always lend my ears to hear whatever nonsense she had to say... I miss her so much that there isnt a day I havnt shed a tear mourning my loss... Feels like an uprooted plant who havnt found a place yet....

  22. Pansies have always been one of my favourite flowers though I never knew the word meant "thoughts". I'm having similar issues as you with my one remaining parent and I need to remember to be more thoughtful and tolerant. One day, you and I too will be old and also one day, we will no longer have the pleasure and privilege of talking to our parents. Wish I could remember that in the "heat" of the moment. I'm trying.

  23. Its a nice thought and I liked yr blog as a whole...wishing you a nice day

  24. Beautiful--the thought and your flowers.


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