Posted in Food For Soul

Reckoning Senility.

Although I have a long day today (even as a housewife) I feel compelled to blog this first thing this morning.

I unlock my doors when I have my first cuppa for my househelp to enter without knocking. By 7 am today I was wondering whether I should be going for a second coffee even as I was scrolling my phone. I heard my outer pair of double doors open first and was surprised because, there was time yet for my parttime help to arrive. Then the inner single door opened and an old Kerala woman in kasavu sari in her eighties stepped into my living. Seeing me on the couch, confused her and finally realization dawned on her. Then she apologized and left saying, she mistook my doors for the ground floor grills leading to carpark and entrance to our apartments. Her brother had passed away early this week. In this grand old age, apparently she had boarded the train to pay a visit to the bereaved family. I said it was okay but it hit me right then, what old age can do to you. There is no way one can mistake my double doors for an exit to the street. In a single moment I understood what it is about senility that is bothersome. But it is remarkable that the lady has traveled upto Chennai (in all probability with a companion). Physically she seems to be in a far better shape given her age. My guess is that, she wanted to take a walk as she could not be going to temple too soon given the loss in the family. That she is independent enough in the city or wants to be, seems promising. But senility can be really scary. The octogenarian’s confusion for a minute saddened me. She wore that bewildered look as if she was lost. There was even a hint of fear in those eyes that I did not miss. She composed herself quickly which means, her mind is still sharp. New environs and unsteady feet may have unsettled her. Brave of her to venture out and explore the place.

I do have older women in family. Much sharper! As we age, mental health may seem to take predominance over physical health. We can manage every single ailment or disease with medication or surgery. What must be preserved is our mental capacity from becoming casualty to dementia or Alzheimer’s. Working the brain is of even more importance over physical workouts. Exercising the memory power assumes far greater significance. Its a gift to die knowing that your time has come.