“Cherish those you have in your life because you never know when they won’t be around anymore.” -Unknown
Today I am going to share with you a real-life incident that I had the fortune to experience lately.
These words, “All I Needed Was Your Love” were shared by a mother while I was giving a meditation session to a group of senior citizens a few weeks ago.
After the session, I had the chance to talk to the elderly. So I took the opportunity to ask them questions that I had hidden somewhere deep in my heart.
I asked them, ‘Why are you here in a senior citizen home?’ Before you jump to any judgments, let me give you the context of this question.
For centuries, India was a country where family values were always placed above everything else. Majority of Indian families were a joint family, which means that the parents, the kids and the grandparents lived together in one house. They shared joys, sorrows, love, pain and more. They all vowed to go through the ups & downs of life together.
Come 2017 & globalization at its peak, things started changing drastically. Family values started going downhill.
Now coming back to the question. When I asked the elderly, ‘Why are you here in a senior citizen home?’, I simply meant to ask why they were not with their families that most grandparents lived with.
So each one of them started telling me their stories of how they ended up there.
There was this one grandma that touched my soul deeply. She looked like a doll, full of kindness and love in her eyes. She asked me to take a selfie with her as she smiled brightly. She looked very similar to the one in the picture below.
After taking the selfie, I held her hand, she looked into my eyes and then she started sharing her story.
She said, ‘I have a daughter and a son. Once my son got married, he said that he did not want me to live with him in our house.
My daughter, on the other hand, though she was married too, she still wanted me to come and live with her. I had nowhere else to go. So I went to my daughter’s house. But I did not feel comfortable there. So I decided to admit myself in a Senior Citizens home.’
In India, as per the tradition, when a girl gets married, she goes and stays with the guy in his house. This guy may already be living with his own parents.
So now you may understand why it is very uncomfortable for a girl’s mother to go and live in her daughter’s house.
[Though in the modern world, things have started changing, the change is very slow.]
With tears in her eyes, the granny continued, ‘I took care of my son all my life. I always kept his needs above mine. I loved him with all my heart & soul.’
All I Ever Needed Was You
‘But he said that he wants to enjoy his life now. Am I stopping him from enjoying his life? He travels whenever he wants to. I never interrupted in his life or never made decisions for him. I have always wanted to see him happy.
I gave him freedom. But today, he threw me out of my own house just because he wanted to spend alone-time with his wife. Can I not live in one room of my own house? What would it take for him to be able to let me live with him and my grandkids and just see them every single day and love them and talk to them? His mere greeting me ‘Good Morning’ everyday will give me happiness.
I told him, ‘All I want is your love.’
Deep in my heart, I was crying.
Let me also share with you another important detail.
Unlike retirement homes in the developed countries, the condition of most Senior Citizen homes in India is very bad (I am not talking about the luxurious Old Age Homes but the ones for any middle-class old age person). The access to the most basic necessities on a daily basis is a luxury in these homes.
So having to leave one’s home and one’s normal life where one had access to everything, is the most difficult and the most cruel thing to happen to someone as they turn 60.
Something to Think About
All our parents need is our love.
If we cannot give them this Love that they so deserve, then what kind of human beings have we become? What have we grown up into?
Sometimes, their words or their decisions may hurt us.
But aren’t we mature and kind enough to understand that nobody is perfect in this world?
Are we ourselves perfect? Have we ourselves been able to fulfill all our duties successfully in this world?
Spirituality & Forgiveness
The more spiritual we become, the more forgiving we must become naturally.
If we aren’t becoming ‘forgiving’, we must be doing something wrong on our spiritual path or we must haven’t really become spiritual yet.
Being spiritual means connecting to the Soul of each & every being of this world.
The more connected we are, the more forgiving we become.
This connection to each soul helps us realize that we all are indeed the part & parcel of the same Supreme Soul.
All water droplets ARE the ocean.
Spread Only Love, Positivity & Kindness.