Old age does not make me Invisible

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Have you ever observed a get together were there are elders, middle aged and children present, have you noticed how people speak around their elders instead of directly to them.


An elderly couple shared a very interesting viewpoint about feeling absent although being present in a room. "I am here" the one person said, remembering a family get together. Do children think getting older gives them the right to just ignore our spaces in the room, they suddenly now drink, smoke and even curse in our presence. On giving advise, we are told things like, that's not how it is now, maybe in your day it was like you say.


Do we ever take the time out to sit our elders down to actually ask them about what their life experiences were about and learn from their wisdom, make them understand how life has changed now in our time.  No matter how old we get, we must never forget we don't know it all, we must also never forget that even when our elders are ageing, so are we.  As people get older, all they ever want is that sense of belonging and place to feel purposeful but the younger generation do not see that. They will voice them as old fashioned amongst other things and see them as invisible in a room. How times have changed, do we ever think about how we would feel when we are called the elderly? How are we going to deal with it? How do the elderly currently deal with just being ignored and their purpose for life feeling ripped apart.


How we treat our elders says a lot about who we are as human beings.  Changing our attitudes will determine how we are treated when we are called the elderly, remember our children grow up with direct and observational learning.  Learning how to be patient will enable us to adjust with the elders in our lives, learning to listen to them and not feeling irritated when they try to tell you a story for the hundredth time or explain certain life's values to you from their experiences. Remember this is the richness of our heritage, the more we learn from our elders, the more we live the life strengthened by these roots.


"In the past, nothing is irretrievably lost, but rather, on the contrary, everything is irrevocably stored and treasured. To be sure, people tend to see only the stubble fields of transitoriness but overlook and forget the full granaries of the past into which they have brought the harvest of their lives: the deeds done, the loves loved, and last but not least, the sufferings they have gone through with courage and dignity.From this one may see that there is no reason to pity the old people. Instead, young people should envy them. It is true that the old have no opportunities, no possibilities in the future. But they have more than that: Instead of possibilities in the future, they have realities in the past -the potentialities they have actualized, the meanings they have fulfilled, the values they have realized -and nothing and nobody can ever remove these assets from the past."

― quoted by Viktor E. Frankl


Article written by Sohanna Singh.