We often forget them. Miss them terribly. Not only do we create excuses to not have them near us, we also feel they get to us at times. We constantly forget their presence. Neglecting them when they are in front of us. The bitter truth is we all need them. The reality is they protect us. No, I am not talking about masks. I am talking about grandparents.
— UNICEF (@UNICEF) December 29, 2020
Sure, grandmotherly love does not swoon us like romance or life us up like the thrill of getting a new XBOX. Maybe grandfatherly also feels too heavy when they give you career advice you are too young for. Just because someone does not care for us in the way we want them to, does not mean it is not love.
1.The Age Divide
The generation gap between us and them can be avidly depicted like two parallel lines running strong in the same household. It is easy to forget, disremember, mock and not understand someone who is physically debilitating or weak. This is not a Gen-Z problem, it is a universal problem.
— ICE T (@FINALLEVEL) July 27, 2020
Not only do we not pay the time and attention required to someone who needs our love and care, we also feel it is a chore. An aloo ka parantha in the morning or a tip before your first job, these are graceful memories of who they are. And they want you to have them.
Probably, it is because we are young and have a lot of time on our hands when we feel that it is cumbersome to maintain a loving relationship with them. Especially if they are orthodox or conservative, a lot of us avoid even a decent discussion with them. But when the time on your hands is slipping away faster than the needle on your clock, your ideology or mindset, conditioning or beliefs, can hold secondary importance.
2.Try to Understand them
In the last days of their lives, wherein they are bound to be dealing with physical afflictions, health problems, anxieties, doubts, mental health problems they don’t even know what to call, being empathetic is the bare minimum we can do. An ear to listen, a cup of chai with them, a little discussion about your life is all it takes. That is when you realise that when the number of hours you have is less, the number game rarely matters. The little things that you do for them give them happiness, make them feel wanted.
T 3795 – CORRECTION :
Nana .. naati .. par naati
or as they would say
Nana .. धोता ।। पर धोता ।। pic.twitter.com/WAptWoqVrx
— Amitabh Bachchan (@SrBachchan) December 27, 2020
3. Acknowledge them
Let’s not forget that in this pandemic, they have warmly taken care of chores and jobs they could have easily passed away. They have been welcoming and understanding of our breakdown of normalcy which for them was any way their life after retirement. Be it Nani or Nanu, Daadi or Daadu, they have given us the comfort of their presence. Extra “shagan” when we grew an inch taller. Let us go out to play when our parents displayed rigidity. Fed us till our eyebrows because we looked too weak.
Yes, like every other relationship there are toxic relationships too but they are far and few and steps can be taken to ease the stress and build good relationships.
Specially in a year like this one, it does not matter if we can’t party with them or vibe along. Rarely does it count if you don’t “chill” with them. It only matters if you acknowledge them. Let them know they are cool. Tell them their advice worked out. Appreciate what they do. Even if it is nothing.
The views expressed are the author’s own.