Life is a circle. We start out as babes who need to be taken care up. We wet ourselves and dribble our food and can't talk. We are at the mercy of those who take care of us. We grow, we learn and we become independent. As we age we turn back into those babes. We loose our independence, we start wetting ourselves again, we dribble our food and sometimes we get to the point where we can't talk. We are at the mercy of those who take care of us.
Everyone who ages faces the same fate. We are well aware of our limits and our mortality. And so after we pass our children will also age, and once again become children. It was the custom, that as our parents age, we take care of those who took care of us. That we also face the circle, but in a different way. We are taken care of, then we take care of our children, we take care of our parents, till finally we are taken care of once again.
Do I expect our children to take care of us? Yes. Do I want them to have to take care of us? No. I expect them to care of us because I know who my children are. They are full of love and caring. Some more than others but I am always amazed at their willingness to love. I know they could not watch us be unable to care for ourselves and do nothing.
I am sure you have seen the bumper sticker, "Be nice to your kids, they pick your nursing home." How about we be nice to our kids so they will take care of us. You can raise your children, give them a roof over their heads and food to eat. You can make sure they are educated and then send them out into the world. Your job is done. Not well, but its done. How much better would it be to love your children, even if you can't provide it all. To care for them, even when its hard. To show them mercy and unselfishness, so they will in turn show that to you and when you need cared for.
You can have all the savings in the world, you can have a house paid for, everything at your disposal. But that won't stop age. We will get to the point where we will have to be taken care of by someone else. Don't you want someone you love to take care of you? Wouldn't you rather that your children take care of you because they want to rather than feel obligated to?
As I raise my children I will remember that some day they may have to take care of me. And how I care for them will be reflected as they care for me. Loving your children is gonna go a lot further than you think it will.