What is sometimes left unsaid, in some cases truly speaks volumes more than what is shouted. I must have watched this video a dozen times in this past week. I remember the first time I watched it, wincing when the son flies off the handle and berates his father in such a nasty manner.
It hit me like a ton of bricks immediately bringing back memories where my grandfather would be talking about something that was important to him and an aunt of mine would scream at him in the same manner as in this video. Except there was never any realization on her end of wrong doing, disrespect or fault.
I used to get incredibly angry watching this happen, at times I wanted to rip this person a new backside but my attention always was directed to my Grandfather and his response. He would look at her, seemingly with almost no emotion, shake his head and quit speaking until she was gone or at least out of ear shot. Patience, even at this old age, the patience he would show her was a respect that was unfortunately never returned to him.
I know that as people age, they take on a slower speed and if they are retired and not as active with events or hobbies there is a limit to how much they have to speak about and tend to repeat themselves quite often as a result. My grandfather, towards his last few years did this somewhat frequently but I never interrupted or told him that he had told me already. To him, it was important, and what was important to me, was the time I had to spend with him. I’ll tell you that I would stop and listen to him tell the same story 1,000 times if that meant that I would be able to spend another day or two with him.
My absolute favorite final memory of him was the summer before his demise. My husband and I had him over for dinner to our house, as he was usually alone at night. My step-dad and my young brother-in-law, husband and I sat until almost midnight listening to my Grandpa talk about his childhood, military experiences, you name it, it was covered. No one even had any sense of time, it seemed to stand still. When we finally checked the clock it was past mid-night and that was something unheard of for my Grandpa. He never stayed out past 9 on his best day, because he had to watch the 10 O’clock news and would be in bed by 11, as he was very regimented. I will never forget that night and I know neither my step-dad or husband will either.
Now perhaps I am a bit more enlightened or sensitive than most on this subject because I have already lost three “Parents” in my lifetime (My dad, grandma and grandpa), only being 30 years old, when most people lose their parents much later in life. I still have my mom and my step-dad, and I hold them very near and dear to my heart, especially when they repeat themselves, because I know someday I will miss those stories like crazy when I cannot simply call them or swing by for a visit.
Something has happened with these remaining generations. The respect for our elders is lacking and in some instances gone altogether. I could never wrap my head around how certain “older” family members regarded my grandparents like they either only existed certain times a year or even worse…like they were inferior to their own child because they were growing older and more fragile. Even through the dismay that I felt for many years for the way that these individuals treated their own parents I find myself feeling sorry for them, because they are the ones who truly missed out on what their parents/older generations had to offer them through their mere stories.
While this video strikes a chord with me and brings back somewhat negative memories, it also serves as a reminder as we all tend to get busy with our lives and simple things like sitting around and socializing in person is truly the most valuable “networking” that we have. Sharing old memories and making new ones with a small group of friends and family that love you through thick and thin instead of sharing “Selfie’s” and berating others views publicly to 500+ acquaintances who really could care less.
While I am one that likes to socialize, period…My favorite social setting is still sitting around a table, on a couch, in the backyard watching the sun set into night around a bonfire and sharing stories of past, present and visions of future with the ones I love most…something that was absolutely instilled in me by the elder generation.
I truly love that phrase that goes something like, “love your parents/grandparents because as you are growing up, they are growing old.” As you grow up the parental roles “somewhat” swap. Your parents become more reliant on you than vice versa and if they afforded you every patience in the world, then by all means you must reciprocate. If they were absent or were not the most patient, than they stand to learn, even in their older age from a better example set by you towards them.
Love, understanding and patience can be taught as easily as reciprocated and you may never get an acknowledgement or thank you, but know that you will thank yourself when you too get to be that age as your conscious will be clear that you projected the same or more love, understanding and patience than you received.