My dad walks more hunched over. My mom’s cough rattles a little more than it used to. Although it has taken a few years to actually notice changes, my parents are gently aging. The two biggest role models in my life are changing slowly but surely. Even as an adult, I still look to my parents with the same awe and wonder as I did when I was only five years old.
Now don’t get me wrong, they are still up and at ‘em each morning, put in well over 40 hours every week at their jobs, and can wrestle with my little boy with a smile on their face. They are still very active every single day! Yet, changes are occurring over time.
It is my guess that a large portion of people’s views and opinions of their parents stem from childhood. If your childhood is anything like mine, it was fairly consistent with this: dad enjoyed being outside and teaching you about animals and mom sat through anything school related while making sure every need, no matter how minuscule, was met. Now obviously, this depiction doesn’t even scratch the surface of describing parents, but it is a start. Images such as these from your childhood are just ingrained in your head. Comparing those memories of what your parents were capable of to what is now can make it tough to swallow.
While I keep pushing it aside, I know the reality is that in a few decades the roles will flip and I will be helping them, just like one day my children will aid my husband and I when we need it. When I start to feel down when I think about that eventual stage in life, I remind myself that this isn’t permanent. Our physical body is only temporary. We are all children of God saved by Jesus Christ when we accept Him into our heart. So while it is difficult to grasp, it won’t last long. We are here to serve, be an example, and give all glory to above. And I suppose the constant cycle of parents tending to their children then a child taking care of their parents is in God’s plan to make sure those who served for so long are able to see the fruits of their labor through the actions of their children which are then directed towards them. Aging is difficult, but looking at it from a different perspective doesn’t make it seem so scary.
Even though I have my own family, my parents continue to take care of me and I know they will as long as they can. My “Mama” and “Papa” are just awesome people; I’ll still ask her to stitch a rip in my clothes and will still call him when I can’t figure out why my car won’t start. I will still cling to my ideas of them from my childhood, but I’m happy that I get to make new memories with them today with me and my growing family.