It struck me just a few days back how even at this wonderfully ripe age of 20-something, when you’re talking to your parents and hear them sounding so ‘human’, that that is still enough to shake you to your core. Human here means discussing their worries or concerns, including you in the family financial assessment, future of the family, future of your siblings, doubts, fears, concerns etc. etc. It’s only then that you realize how much you’ve taken your parents for granted all these years. How long have they hid their real fears and concerns from you? How, in their own ways, have they tried to keep their problems as secondary in priority to the family’s well-being?
This reminds me of that other major ‘revelation’ you get early in life. That ‘light bulb’ moment when as a kid you realize your parents are not always right. OMG!!! That they really don’t know everything and are not perfect but are actually just ordinary human beings trying to do extraordinary things. Let’s face it, do any of us really have what it takes, at this stage of our lives, to become parents and raise a family? And yet our parents get a lot of flak from us even when honestly, I doubt we could do any better. Lol.
Then after the second revelation, where your parents actually show their own fears, share their doubts and concerns, there comes a difficult decision…retreat or advance? You can ignore what their saying completely and just retreat back to ‘a happy place’ where all things are good, keep doing whatever you like, tell yourself that your parents just don’t get you and they’re being (despite all their good intentions) unreasonable. Or…you can stand firm, hear them out and accept that very heavy mantle of responsibility that is being passed on to you. Tick-tock, tick-tock, tick-tock. So, what do you do? Will you ever be ready?