Just Me

Just Me
Look,I'm just sayin'

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Struggling to understand

 I am the youngest. Yup, I'm just 63. I have an older sister and two older brothers. One brother has passed on, but I still count him. Whenever I talk with them I am aware that I am the youngest, the kid. Isn't that funny how that works ? Nothing need be said out loud, it is just a very subtle nuance in tone. Mom is 87 and the youngest in her family. Out of ten children she is the last one, all the others are gone now, and she alone is left. She doesn't have an older sister or brother left to confide in. I suppose that makes her the oldest now. I wonder if it will be the same for me. I don't want to be the last to go. I was always the last to go.
 I was thinking about this because of Mom. As I said she is 87 now and having some difficulties associated with that condition. Her husband, Joe, not my father, has had to be paced in an assisted living facility. The man is 97. This has left her alone again for the most part. It is only a recent event and she hasn't had time to adjust yet. The thing is, time. I'm big on old sayings and time and tide wait for no man is one of my favorites. It applies to so many situations we find our self in. Chronological order can not be changed nor time halted. I wonder how it feels to have no one older to talk to. The only advice she hears now is from her children, doctors and maybe a friend. All of those folks are younger than her. I imagine it is extremely difficult to listen to the advice of your children. Mine already try on occasion and I admit I don't listen very well. Darn kids, they are only forty, what do they know about anything !
 I can't explain it but understand it. When all things are equal we defer to age. At least in family we do. The older siblings boss the younger ones around. The younger one don't like it but grudgingly comply. If we don't we will have to answer to Mom and Dad. The older kids are always in charge. Even after we are all " grown " up it remains that way to a degree. The older ones get their say first, and there is a certain leverage that goes along with that. The older kids lead the way. Of course that is a generalized statement and things must remain equal. Should one child become rich or famous that changes. Should another become, shall we say less than a stellar citizen, they may forfeit their position in the hierarchy. That may be subtle, or glaringly obvious to others outside the family.
 I wonder if this is how my Mom feels ? Is that how most older folks feel ? When you are left with no one older in your family to confide in, you become confused and undecided ? Sure some of this stems from neurological causes. There are afflictions associated with old age. I just wonder if this aspect has ever been studied. What is the psychological effect upon you ? It must be different for each of us. I suppose that makes sense. I was thinking about going from youngest to oldest. That is my Mothers situation and may become mine. Would it be different if the situation were reversed ? What if you remained the oldest ? My brother did just that.
 I have no first hand experience with this. I do believe that wealth would change the dynamic of the whole thing. If one were able to just throw money at the problem it would ease things a bit. I'm not saying it would make it any better, just easier to deal with. It is that way with a lot of things we encounter in life. If you only had the money. Money is not an equalizer, but will definitely tip the scales in your favor ! It doesn't matter about your age or position in that scenario.
 So, I find myself struggling to understand. I'm sure I'm not the first to consider all of this. I know I won't be the last. I struggle to understand the way Mom must feel and what emotion must be driving her thoughts. At 63 I feel like it is time, time for me to grow up. Thing is, to your Mother I don't think that is ever possible. I will always be her " kid " just as I think of my children the same way. Yes, hopefully she will listen to reason and do what I feel is best. But, I'm certain the thought will always be present, he is just a kid. She has no one " older " to consult. If his is what it means to grow up I don't want to ! I don't want to be the oldest. That wasn't intended for me. Is that what Mom thinks ? I understand that completely.