A message I read on WhatsApp, giving a reminder, the blessing of age when filled with acts of worship.
He said, if we live beyond 63 years in a healthy, capable state and do not trouble the children, it is a bonus.
This memory is important because we can’t expect too much from our children.
Not because they don’t believe them, but the number of ages and lives is God’s secret.
A friend of mine who recently lost her husband and only child in an accident left me that memory.
He said, as mothers especially women, always remember, we are responsible for our own welfare, not others.
If we have children and are able to take care of us until our last breath, that’s called luck and good fortune.
I raise this issue as a reminder of something we may have forgotten about this country becoming an aging country, less than 10 years from now.
What are our preparations in that direction?
Aging is not only about infrastructural facilities but what is more important is how we treat the elderly.
It doesn’t matter our own flesh and blood or the people around us.
Social media with the recent election war, is a witness to our behavior.
Really upset and disappointed when reading the comments of young people who on average don’t seem to appreciate the elderly. Impolite and uncivilized.
A lot of comments are thrown, either to the elderly candidate, or anyone who is quite old as dysfunctional, with statements like ‘better take care of the grandkids’.
While there are many among our seniors who can still contribute energy and ideas to society.
Just because the young have conflicting views with the old, they are belittled.
I see many pensioners who still want to serve the community but are hindered by the society’s view as if in their prime, they should just sit at home, go to the mosque or ‘take care of their grandchildren’.
Many of my acquaintances are also shy to be active on social media uploading their activities for fear of being labeled.
Even though the activities are beneficial such as participating in hill climbing and traveling, but they are afraid to read the comments.
If that’s what our ‘respect’ for the elderly looks like, it’s really sad. We should give them support and encouragement, instead of pointless criticism.
Therefore, before talking about facilities and infrastructure, it is better to look at ourselves first, to what extent we treat the elderly.
Don’t forget, we will all go through the old phase if we are extended by Him.
Nor Afzan Mohamad Yusof, Assistant News Editor, Utusan Malaysia
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