The Selfish Family

by sharyn anderson
(Ontario, Canada)

It was grandfathers' birthday. He was 79. He got up early, shaved, showered, combed his hair and put on his Sunday best so he would look nice when they came.

He skipped his daily walk to the town cafe where he had coffee with his cronies. He wanted to be home when they came.

He put his porch chair on the sidewalk so he could get a better view of the street when they drove up to celebrate his birthday.

At noon, he got tired but decided to forgo his nap so he could be there when they came. Most of the rest of the afternoon he spent near the telephone so he could answer it when they called.

He has five married children, 13 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. One son and daughter live within ten miles of his place. They hadn't visited him for a long time. But today was his birthday, and they were sure to come.

At suppertime, he left the cake untouched so they could cut it and have dessert with him.

After supper, he sat on the porch waiting. At 8:30, he went to his room to prepare for bed. Before retiring, he left a note on the door, which read, "Be sure to wake me up when they come."

It was Grandfathers' birthday. He was 79.

** Found this clipping in my stuff and thought l'd share.

Comments for The Selfish Family

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My Mum.
by: Anonymous

Moved to another page so others can comment:
My Elderly Mum


The rest of the story
by: Nancy

Don't just assume the children didn't visit the father b/c they were too busy or neglectful. Seems that is what society usually thinks when an adult child doesn't visit an elderly parent.

I stopped visiting my mother and father b/c they were mean to me. They were mean to me when I was growing up and they were mean to me into my 40s when I stopped visiting then.

But before that I did a lot for them, took them places, shopped for them, cleaned, ran errands, visited every, and put up with a lot of abuse until I stopped the abuse by not subjecting myself to it.

I got blamed and shamed by family members b/c of not doing for my parents as they thought I should. No one remembered what I had done for them.

So don't just assume the adult children are at fault until you know the full story.

Stay connected
by: Anonymous

Well this is very sentimental but what about "the rest of the story"? Did he stay connected? Did he call, write, visit THEM? Or did he become hermit like and expect to be feted?

A counselor once said to me, "Your kids don't visit you enough? Visit them, call them, you be the one who starts the dialog since you are the one who wants it".


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