Some of them have chosen to be there. Some of them were placed there. Some of them were forced to be there.
Some of them tried to go back to, but they were not allowed to.
One of them was this lady, of age of a grandmother, in her 70’s.
When one of the older grandmas asked her how she was doing, she said smiling: I am fine. Just have this blood pressure that is varying these days. And these silly joints need some pain-killers. And the legs and hands behave somewhat erratically now most of the time. Otherwise I am doing fine.
While saying this, the smile on her face was impeccable.
She spoke so easily as if it was her natural state of mind, reacting on difficulties of life in a way so as to find a way of living and that too, positively, even if surviving a basically frustrating atmosphere daily.
This old-age home is a paid facility for the senior citizens, who can pay, and has people from different walks of life.
Almost of them have sons and daughters but they are not staying with them. Reasons vary – some of the reasons we can perceive.
Some of them have children settled elsewhere and the parents found they were unable to migrate. Many of them have children settled elsewhere who decided to abandon their parents. Some of them have lost their children. Very few of them never had any child.
By feeling the atmosphere of this old-age home, though paid, it cannot said to be a conducing environment. The seniors living there are a scattered lot. Some socialize while others keep up to them. The old-age home, though charges them, fails to give them a decent daily-life.
Expecting the emotional support, something they need the most, is not to be expected.
They need emotional support with attachment and not the occasional connect with the outside world that comes in the form of public relations exercises of non-governmental organizations and socialites who scavenge for such events and visit places like this old-age home on days like the Independence Day or Diwali or any other festival to fulfill the need for their personal aggrandizement or for photo-op sessions.
And in this atmosphere, such a jovial and natural response to the life’s tougher moments was inspiring.
The smile that so beautifully reflected had the in-built answer on how to deal with the pain.
Take it head-on. Take it positively. Don’t run away from the pain. Try to live with it in order to win over it.
Running away only exacerbates the misery because you fail to see if there could be a possible way out.
A natural smile while in pain had this message for all of us, the smile of the grandma was telling me.
It was, yet again, reaffirming my faith in this lesson that I had learnt through my visits to such places.
©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/