Friday, May 31, 2013

Random Acts of Kindness -- Helping Out an Old Man

The Random Acts of Kindness Blogfest started on May 27th and is ending today, May 31st. It is sponsored by Wayman Publishing. As part of the blogfest, they are offering several ebooks for free. You can download these wonderful ebooks HERE


Random Acts of Kindness -- Helping Out an Old Man

In our village, there is an old man who has Parkinson's disease. He has two sons who now have families of their own and he lives with his wife. As is a recurring theme in a lot of places, most seniors are ignored, abandoned or treated badly. That poor man is no exception. His sons drive cars and their wives wear fancy clothes yet not one of them takes the time to drive the old man anywhere or to give him new clothes to wear. 

The old man wears what can only be described as rags because the clothes are so old and have not been properly washed for so long. To make matters worse, his wife cannot be bothered to bathe or feed him. The man's Parkinson's is now so bad that he is unable to bathe himself properly or knot his pajama-trouser's drawstrings. To be perfectly honest, no one has even taken him to a doctor. We are simply guessing that what he has is Parkinson's because we had met another old man years ago who had been diagnosed with the same thing and we recognized the symptoms. 

One day, the old man approached my Dad to ask about how he could go about applying for an Aadhar card (a form of identification) because he needed one to continue getting his old-age pension (that's all he has to live on). 

My Dad told him that he needed to re-apply for an Aadhar card himself because the first one he applied for got lost somewhere and he was asked to re-apply. Because Dad knew that no one would bother to help out the old man, he told him he could go with us as we were taking the car.

On the day we were to go to town to apply for the card, we picked up the old man. I drove him and my Dad to the place where they were processing applications. My Dad and I helped him fill-out his form. I left both of them to go on another errand and told them that I would be back in a few minutes. 

When I came back, the old man was still seated next to my Dad near the long queue. I decided to sit with them. After about two hours, it was their turn. Dad went in first and the old man was called in after him. The process of applying for the card involves getting the eyes scanned and getting a biometric print of all the fingers of both hands. 

My Dad managed to get everything done without any trouble. However, the old man had Parkinson's and his hands were shaking badly. It was next to impossible to have him press his hand down on the machine that takes the prints. He was getting stressed and very tense because he could not hold his hands steady for a few seconds. 

The young lady processing the applications was a very patient young woman who, thankfully, knew how to soothe the feelings of the elderly. She kept trying to hold his hands down without even once losing her temper or raising her voice. After what seemed like the hundredth time, the machine managed to register one good print. And the girl told the old man that he did just fine. 

As the old man was trying to get out of than cramped little cubicle, his legs wouldn't move. People with Parkinson's normally have trouble walking. His eyes became moist as he seemed to be in despair because his legs would not obey his brain. The young lady then held his arm and told him to take his time. There was a very long queue outside and people were getting antsy but the young lady was calm and allowed the old man to relax and take his time. He tried to show his gratitude to the young lady though his body seemed to have turned into a statue during those minutes.

Luckily, his legs began to move and he was able to leave the cubicle. My Dad and I then helped him into the car and we took him to our house. The old man would not stop thanking Dad for taking him along. He was just so grateful that he did not have to take public transport and go alone. His eyes were actually filling-up. My Dad told him it was no big deal because he needed to apply for his card too. 

It brings joy to my heart to see a young person being patient and kind towards an old one. That young lady was an angel. She may have not done much but her patience helped to calm the scared old man feel better. It is so easy to lose one's temper when faced with someone who can't do the simplest things. For an old man whose own wife and children would have nothing to do with him, such kindness means so much.

In this day and age, very few people ever take the time to consider that they will be old one day too. If they do not take care of their elderly today, who will take care of them when they grow old? 



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Posted by: Bames Pabla
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