Actually, that's where it all started: the melatonin. I haven't been sleeping well, so last night I popped a 10mg tablet. I slept very well for a change, and maybe that's all this weird mood is about ie. am I still doped up at noon?
But here's the thing that's got me going and has prompted me to write this post in this sadly, of late, neglected blog. I woke up the grand-daughter at 7:30 am to get her ready for school and she couldn't come awake. I asked why? Did she stay up too late on a school night? No, but mommy had given her a tiny melatonin to get her to settle down last night. Oh, so that's it. She was as dopey as I was this morning (though she brightened up on the walk to school thank heaven!)
But the bad part of a dopey grandmother trying to talk to a sleepy grandchild in the morning is we began arguing about ... the melatonin! She told me in no uncertain terms that I shouldn't be taking 10mgs ... it was too much! I saw red. Here's my 9-year-old grand-daughter telling me what I should and shouldn't do. Suddenly, I could hear both my daughters in her. Of late, in fact, for the past few years, they both keep telling me what to do, and quite frankly, I'm getting ticked off about it. Is anyone else my age (66 now) experiencing the same phenomena?
You know, I've always laughed at the irony of life that as we get older, we become infants again. Think about it: old people and young babies have so much in common: they're bald or balding; they need constant care and attention; they wet themselves and need diapers; their mobility is impaired (for opposite reasons of course); they can't feed themselves and need to be fed; they need to be bathed, toileted etc etc. Their speech is often incoherent; their eyes can't focus ... you get my drift, right?
Well I think, sadly, hubby and I are entering that stage now, and it's showing in how our children and even the grandchild are telling us what to do! I want to scream: "This is MY life, not yours! Don't tell me what to do!"
But then, something else comes to mind: maybe this is more than we're losing our abilities. Maybe they are simply getting back at us for years of telling them what to do! I've noticed lately, more than ever, that everything I suggest gets either pooh-poohed or shot down, so much so in fact I'm realizing I'd better shut up and accept that these are THEIR lives. After all, there's wisdom in the adage that "unsolicited advice is rarely appreciated".
But see, that's where I find myself bristling: okay, they no longer want any advice from me. They think they know it all. Well and good. At least I can't be blamed if things go awry. But I expect the same courtesy: don't tell me what to do! You don't like my shorts? Well I do! You don't like my haircut? Well it's on my head, not yours! You don't like my taste in music? Well I'm not fond of yours either. But don't shoot me down for suggesting maybe you should try this or that. Simple courtesy would be to say "Thanks, I'll think about it."
You know sometimes I wonder what families would be like if each of us treated each member the way we treat our friends. It's amazing ... and annoying ... to see one of your children shoot down an idea you suggest, in a tone that says they're fed up with you and asks "what do you know", then see their friends suggest the exact same thing and the friends get smiles and "Thanks I'll think about it". Weird! It actually hurts, to be honest, to not get a hug for a week and then see your children gushing over and hugging a friend they saw a few days back as if they hadn't seen them for a year. It's almost a slap in the face when a parent cops the scowls and eye-rolling and a second later, their friends get smiles and hugs. If only they realized that we too need the hugs and smiles far more than the criticism, just like they did when they were little.
Ah, see, that must be it: their day of retribution is here. Now it's their turn to give back what we gave them over the years. Yeah, yeah, I know they love us. We loved them too and still do, no matter how they treat us. Guess it's just one of those days that seem to hit me too often lately. It has must be the pending old age that makes me feel almost intimidated by my own children, even useless or stupid ... as I said, "weird"!
Let me leave you with this beautiful graphic I came across this morning on Facebook:
Isn't that beautiful? And isn't it so true? Maybe I was remiss in doing that, or I didn't do it enough when both my girls were growing up. It's the kind of thing that should have been hung on my kitchen wall as a daily reminder. But now, has anyone seen one like this for parents? How about this:
"Adult children need to keep topping up a parents' bucket of self-esteem from time to time because old age tips it over and empties it"
I'll leave it there. Darn melatonin!