Friday, September 28, 2007

Dignity at the Dinner Table

Dad is getting frail ever since the stroke a couple of years ago. The physical decline is very obvious. He is so weak now that his stride is reduced to a slow drag. Every movement is extremely slow and clumsy, even eating is such a chore for him. He used to eat with chopsticks. Well, he still does, but with the declining dexterity, it would be difficult for him to pick up the dishes or shoving rice into his mouth. There would be rice spilling everywhere on the dining able, on the floor and on himself. Therefore such a chore for everyone else to clean up after him, every meal.

"Dad, why don't you just use spoon instead?" I asked him once over dinner, more like shouting as his hearing is failing as well.

"Hmm..." It was sort of a deep grunt from dad. Then silence, somewhat an awkward silence. I was not certain if he heard me or understood me.

I remember hearing this somewhere that people want to die with dignity, but the fact is that there is no dignity in dying. People should live with dignity, not die with it.

Isn't that true?!

So, I think dad heard me and fully understood me over dinner that night. He is simply holding on to one of the few things that he still could do, which reminds him of the able man he used to be.

I was home for a week. This time around over dinner, I asked dad to sit closer to the dinning table, therefore any spillage was contained on the table. Then I wiped the table clean after dinner.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hello, got to let him hold on to his last bit of dignity. That's the only thing left. Be kind, my dear.