I write this while I’m sitting outside the ICU, praying for my mom to recover from a heart attack and an angioplasty. Sitting here, I can only think of how a close and scary encounter with life serves as a wake-up call.
As a child, the most important people in your life are your parents. As you grow older, you get busy in your own life, you do not realise how your priorities are shifting. When you become a parent, you realise that there is no love greater than what you feel for your child. You start to appreciate everything your parents have done and are still continuing to do for you, all over again. But by then, sadly, you do not have the time to be with them and reciprocate their selfless love. No doubts on the love you feel for them, but life somehow doesn’t allow you to act on it and be there for them physically. For most parents, it is a stage of life when they need their kids the most – due to ailing health, loneliness, etc.
And then one day, God decides to give you a wake-up call!
A wake-up call to act on your priorities, to make you realise that time and people are the only things that matter in life, to stop running around and realise the importance of life and love and the people in your life.
My parents live by themselves since I got married. Dad goes to work while mom is alone at home with her house-help. Even though we are in the same city and they get to meet my sister, myself and our kids over the weekends, they do get lonely on most days. To add to it, their health is not at their best and it is really sad that as a daughter I cannot keep track of their ailments and medications. I do not even find the time to talk to both of them at least once, on most days. While being a stay-at-home-mum keeps me close to my kids at all times, it doesn’t give me much time for myself and others who are important to me.
Two days ago, when I received a call from her house-help saying mom was complaining of bad chest pain, had breathing trouble and could barely talk, life seemed to have hit a pause or slow-motion button. How I left my kids to my mother-in-law, got my car, picked mom and got her to the nearest hospital emergency is still a blur in my mind.
Thankfully, with God’s grace and the right medical treatment, she is in recovery mode now. We know that her heart and her body will slowly heal and get back to normal soon, but I don’t think our minds will ever recover from this experience!
I am grateful for this opportunity in my life where I’m getting a second chance to take account of what is really important in life. A second chance to make an extra effort, go an extra mile to take time out for my parents and be more involved in their lives.