Our dear friend Fatimah’ has been caring for her elderly parents for many years. We thank her for sharing her experience with us. Here is her story:
I offer my heartfelt congratulations to each of you—to each of us—for at some point on your journey, you may become a Proud & Gratified Parent of a Parent. Ladies 50-plus, you are my sistah’s in many an unknown way. Thus the subject and title of my first sharing with Oops 50!
Yes, indeed, one of my highlights in life is having the honor of caring for my parent(s). For those whose parents are still with us, I say again, “Congratulations!” And, for the parents gone on, “Thank you!” Some of my friends say that I have a lot to share regarding the honorable role of care-taking for a parent. And I just might agree. Here is my first 50cents on the subject.
Over the years, I have had, and am still having, powerful transformative experiences through caring for both of my parents. My mom (R.I.P) was challenged with dementia, but this little, yet extremely powerful lady was with us until she was 98.
My pape’ is still with me at the tender age of 105. One thing that’s for sure – the role of parent is not an easy one.
I have come to realize (considering my parents’ ways, ideas, beliefs, habits & histories) they did absolutely the very best they could for me. From the time I was a little girl until high school, my mom and I had some moments, mainly to remind me that she was the boss, the goddess, the doer, the artist, the one who stuggled. I now know that within those ‘who’s boss’ experiences, she was empowering me—by standing in her own power. Little did I know then that her ground rules were roots for my survival – her creative gifts, food for my soul. Her fierceness was my foundation for growth and empowerment.
My pape’, a gentle man indeed, has his ways, beliefs, history and experiences too. Pape’ and I flow 97% of the time with ease. The few confrontations we’ve had only began as he got older and realized that his physical self and gentlemanly ways were changing. His man-ness, too, was shifting.
So, from then to now, what have I gained through the honorable role of being ‘A Proud & Gratified Parent of a Parent’ –that makes me congratulate myself…in gratitude? I’ll start with some critical words for me:
Allow, Trust, Remember, Stand,
Give Choice, Be Responsible, Respect, Create Authenticity,