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The Sky Gets Dark Slowly

Discussion in 'Interesting Shares' started by Cheeniya, Sep 15, 2021 at 8:05 AM.

  1. Cheeniya

    Cheeniya Super Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Zhou Daxin’s latest novel, “The Sky Gets Dark Slowly”. It is a sensitive exploration of old age and the complex, hidden emotional worlds of the elderly in a rapidly ageing population.
    In it he writes, “…Many elderly speak as though they know everything, but of old age they are in fact as ignorant as children. Many elderly are in fact, completely unprepared for what they are to face when it comes to getting old and the road that lay ahead of them.
    “In the time between a person turning 60 years old, as they begin to age, right until all the lights go out and the sky gets dark, there are some situations to keep in mind, so that you will be prepared for what is to come, and you will not panic.
    ONE. The people by your side will only continue to grow smaller in number. People in your parents’ and grandmothers’ generation have largely all left, whilst many of your peers will increasingly find it harder to look after themselves, and the younger generations will all be busy with their own lives. Even your wife or husband may depart earlier than you, or that you would expect, and what might then come are days of emptiness. You will have to learn how to live alone, and to enjoy and embrace solitude.
    TWO. Society will care less and less for you. No matter how glorious your previous career was or how famous you were, ageing will always transform you into a regular old man and old lady. The spotlight no longer shines on you, and you have to learn to contend with standing quietly in one corner, to appreciate the hubbub and views that come after you, and you must overcome the urge to be envious or grumble.
    THREE. The road ahead will be rocky and full of precarity. Fractures, cardio-vascular blockages, brain atrophy, cancer…these are all possible guests that could pay you a visit any time, and you would not be able to turn them away. You will have to live with illness and ailments, to view them as friends, even; do not fantasize about stable, quiet days without any trouble in your body. Maintaining a positive mentality and getting appropriate, adequate exercise is your duty, and you have to encourage yourself to keep at it consistently.
    FOUR. Prepare for bed-bound life, a return to the infant state. Our mothers brought us into this world on a bed, and after a journey of twists and turns and a life of struggle, we return to our starting point – the bed –and to the state of having to be looked after by others. The only difference being, where we once had our mothers to care for us, when we prepare to leave, we may not have our kin to look after us. Even if we have kin, their care may never be close to that of your mother’s; you will more likely than not, be cared for by nursing staff who bear zero relation to you, wearing smiles on their face all whilst carrying weariness and boredom in their hearts. Lay still and don’t be difficult; remember to be grateful.
    FIVE. There will be many swindlers and scammers along the way. Many of them know that the elderly have lots of savings, and will endlessly be thinking of ways to cheat them of their money through scam phone calls, text messages, mail, food and product samples, get-rich-quick schemes, products for longevity or enlightenment… basically, all they want is to get all the money. Beware, and be careful, hold your money close to you. A fool and his money are soon parted, so spend your pennies wisely.
    Before the sky gets dark, the last stretches of life’s journey will gradually get dimmer and dimmer, naturally it will be harder to see the path ahead that you are treading towards, and it will be harder to keep going forward. As such, upon turning 60, it would do us all well to see life for what it is, to cherish what we have, to enjoy life whilst we can, and to not take on society’s troubles or your children’s and grandchildren’s affairs for yourself. Stay humble, don’t act superior on account of your own age and talk down to others – this will hurt yourself as much as it will hurt others. As we get older, all the better should we be able to understand what respect is and what it counts for. In these later days of your lives, you have to understand what it means, to let go of your attachments, to mentally prepare yourself. The way of nature is the way of life; go with its flow, and live with equanimity.
    For all of us, a nice read, very beautiful, very true!
    Hardly the day started and … it is already six o’clock in the evening.
    Barely arrived on Monday and it’s already Friday.
    … and the month is almost over.
    … and the year is almost up.
    … and already 50 or 60 or 70 years of our lives have passed.
    … and we realize that it is too late to go back…
    So…Let’s try to take full advantage of the time we have left …
    Let’s not stop looking for activities that we like…
    Let’s put color in our grayness…
    Let’s smile at the little things in life that put balm in our hearts.
    And yet, we must continue to enjoy serenely the time that remains.
    Let’s try to eliminate the ‘after’…
    I do it after…
    I will say after…
    I will think about it after…
    We leave everything for ‘later’ as if ‘after’ was ours.
    Because what we do not understand is that:
    after, the coffee cools…
    after, priorities change…
    after, the charm is broken…
    after, health passes…
    after, the children grow up…
    after, the parents get older…
    after, the promises are forgotten…
    after, the day becomes the night…
    after, life ends…
    And all that ‘after’, we find it’s often too late…
    So… leave nothing for ‘later’…
    Because in always waiting for later, we can lose the best moments,
    the best experiences,
    the best friends,
    the best family…
    The day is today…The moment is now…
    We are no longer at the age where we can afford to postpone until tomorrow what needs to be done right away.
    So let’s see if you’ll have time to read this message and then share it.
    Or maybe you’ll leave it for…’later’…
    And you will not share it “ever’ ’’
    Even share with those who are not yet ‘seniors’.
    May you be well and happy…
    iyerviji, radv and joylokhi like this.

  2. Thyagarajan

    Thyagarajan IL Hall of Fame

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    That is why I always begin reading from bottom and the contents of bottom sustains my interest the I read further to the top and if there is midway something to imbibe I begin once again reading top to bottom.

    This habit I picked up during me service with Bharat Matha. The first thing I must look for the signature and then status of signaturee and then contents in reverse direction.

    Likewise this shared post I read. In my experience, when one finds there are too many tasks crying for immediate attention there is need for prioritising and then segregate- most Immediate - immediate- urgent - others.

    Present is important but task selection for action is all the more important.
    When huge task at hand and of immediate category & at same time, if one gets nature’s call the latter chore supersedes all other work and gets top priority !

    Before the sky turns dark ....
    but old men invariably wake up before it is dawn before twilight appears and begin to know and act to remain healthy, wealthy & wise!
    Cheeniya and joylokhi like this.
  3. joylokhi

    joylokhi Platinum IL'ite

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    Could give a hundred likes to this! Although it may look like a pessimistic view of life , they are the facts that have been brought out so well. Every "senior " needs to read this and bear in mind for practice. Have read a lot on aging, but this is one of the most factual and relevant advices come across. Thank you very much for the share.
    Cheeniya and Thyagarajan like this.
  4. iyerviji

    iyerviji IL Hall of Fame

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    My dear Anna

    I second Joylokhi. Whatever is written is very true about old age. If you are hake and healthy but if you are not well you have to depend on your children. I experienced this recently

    We came to Kerala in January end for my cataract operation and was here for five and a half months.. Eyes were bright and no problem. Had dry cough and breathelessness .Want to go back to Mumbai but my daughter and son in lae were not allowing. Fi nally we were back to Mumbai on July 12th. I we through all tests and became better. Now my husband got severe breathelessness and was admitted in hospital. Was there for five days. He became ok but again last week of August he had so many problems and again in hospital. Earlier my son in law was saying you go and wind up and come.But we did not want
    But due to husband's health problems we shifted to Kerala permanently. Now we are dependent on them.

    In young age children listen to us and old age we have to listen to them

    Now he is better but weakness is there
    joylokhi, Cheeniya and Thyagarajan like this.

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