I was visiting a close relative of mine in Klang General Hospital the other day, and it brought back a lot of memories. I’ve been here before, approximately 10 years back taking care of my grandfather on a rotational night shift on the 8th floor. It was a scary experience when my grandfather freaked the shit out of me before he finally passed away. He saw his death and tried explaining it to me in vain. I just couldn’t make out his conversations with ‘someone’ else, possibly from the other world.
The hospital has more patients than wards, so my uncle was placed uncomfortably close with other patients. I personally hate going to hospitals because every single person over there looks like they need attention. They all look so weak and deserve some sort of attention. Some of them have someone to look after them; some of them look so lonely and miserable.
I was talking to my uncle when I heard someone was breathing heavily; panting like he’s going to go anytime soon. It was coming from the next bed. One old Chinese man, in his 80′s is gasping for breath; he was fitted with a type of mask which was connected directly to something that looks like a gas tank. He was clearly struggling, turning left and right restlessly, while trying to inhale as much as possible. His eyes open’s every now and then, like he was looking for someone.
I looked at him without blinking for a few seconds…
Nobody was beside him. No relative to take care of this man.It’s a scene I hate to see. It’s a scene that no parents should go through. It’s a scene that shows that the children’s of this man is doing a great sin. A great sin that will never go away even if you feed millions of poor children’s.
When I was in secondary school; sometimes I used to take a bus to go to my grandparents’ house which was located behind Pantai Medical Center. From the bus stop, you’ll have to cross a small pedestrian bridge and walk to the other side of the road before you could go to Pantai Medical Center. There was this one time when I was about to get down from the bus, one old Indian lady got down together with me. She was slightly trembling and was at least 60 years old. She was carrying a worn down bag on her left shoulder, and her umbrella doubled as walking stick.
I could slightly remember our conversation on that day:
“Aiya, inthe pantai haspeteri yenggeya iruke?”
“Aiya, where is Pantai Medical Center?”
“Inggethan minekke patti, road thandi poyitte right le valenji nerah poninggena anggethan iruke patti”
“Just nearby patti, cross the road and then turn right and walk all the way straight”
She stared at me blankly, giving me the WTF look.
At that age, I was a bit shy to company her since I was worried if any of my friends happen to see me walking with an old lady, they might tease and shame me in school. Reluctantly, since I felt a bit guilty, I told her I’ll guide and walk her there.
On the way, she explained that she has come for a medical checkup, and her health is just fine. If I remember correctly, she mentioned that she has 3-4 children’s, all working adults and all her children’s are busy working so they couldn’t take her for the medical checkup. Even at that age, I was practically cursing the children’s because out of 3-4 kids, none of them even bothered to take a day off to send their mother for a medical checkup.
And she has to take public transportation, walk 200-300 meters away in hot sun to reach the hospital. How fucking selfish can the children’s be? I don’t understand how you can tag behind your girlfriends pavadai all the time wherever she goes, but when it comes to your OWN parents, you can’t even bring them for a medical checkup?
That old man who was gasping for breath and who had no one beside him and the old lady who has children’s yet none of them cared to bring her to the hospital is a perfect example of how sick our society is today. We’re so obsessed with material gains that we forget we’re committing the biggest sin of all by neglecting the very people who had brought us up.
How can you forget what your parents have done for you?
When you were young, you probably was shitting and pissing everywhere; your mom would wash you up and make sure you’re clean all the time. When she gets old and needs an adult diaper, you put her in old folks home because you think it is unhygienic to clean her up, feeling disgusted.
Just to make sure you have enough money for your expenses in college, which you will use for cigarettes’ and cheap liquors anyway; your father would work day and night to ensure there is always enough money for you. Yet when you grow up, you hesitate and think twice to give him some money for his expenses when you can always afford to buy expensive stupid dolls for your girlfriends.
One of the greatest wealth in your life is your parents, and this invaluable relationship has an expiry date. Once they have expired, you will not get them back; so cherish and love them, keep them close to you.
As the saying goes, your parents need your presence more than your presents…