二代是吾师4:第十一次回国的领悟


李春燕    03/14     9761    
5.0/1 



注:去年发海外文轩转发至此。文章已被发表在中文报纸上(儿子朋友转告,我没有报纸)。


上午扶着父亲下楼,看着他因中风无法活动的左臂和肿胀的左手,心疼一词太轻。晚上扶着母亲上楼,捏着她软软的手,看着她越来越细碎的脚步,心疼一词太轻。岁月的更替带大了我的两个儿子,却磨老了我的父母。读着小儿回顾11次回国和姥爷关系的变化 (Cycle of Life),感叹人生诸多无奈。小儿从他给姥爷打针,哥哥托姥爷上楼认识到以前回国家庭聚会似乎是表面化的爱,“Family reunions contain almost a superficial love." 他们体会的真爱也使我在落泪之余觉得欣慰。学习了。(下面是匆匆翻译,觉得无法译出他的英文语境。)


我和姥爷关系的变化


我每年都见姥爷。随着我渐长大,姥爷渐老,我们的关系也在变化。从最开始我很小的时候,我当然是娃娃,姥爷照顾出奇麻烦的我。除了妈妈偶尔讲的,我对那几年几乎毫无记忆。重要的是我那时的感受,可惜大都因遗忘而没用了。


接下来几次回国,我模糊记得家庭聚会和看电视。这个阶段我其实和姥爷没呆多久,亦即高质量共处。我记得自己老是在忙活。忙什么?我也不知,总之只是匆匆上五楼看姥爷,然后赶紧下楼玩儿。因此有时我觉得跟姥爷打招呼几近成了负担。我并不是说不喜欢见到姥爷,只是我在玩兴正浓时不情愿被打扰去跟姥爷“请安”。那个时期,姥爷就像我的一个朋友,并未重要到要停下我的娱乐。


我把从前十次回国归入上面两类,但今年与众不同。明年也许会类似今年,但得取决于我们是否回国,即使回国,谁又能推测未来呢?


今年,因姥爷在元旦那天中风而不再有家庭聚会。在此之前,他都是去和朋友打麻将,如上所述,我们不常见他,他也不需要我们。今年,他需要我们。为了能到外面透透风,我们得先帮他穿袜子和鞋。他下楼时需要Austin站在他前面,因为他担心腿脚不稳滚楼梯。返回上楼时,Austin要推他上去。“推”字不太准确,哥哥是架着姥爷两肋减轻重量,姥爷才一步步上去。


姥爷还有糖尿病,要一天三次注射胰岛素。我自告奋勇每天帮他打两次针。他的左臂不能动还很疼。所以我们得帮他洗手和换衣服。妈妈告诉我姥爷非常独立,84岁高龄,在中风当天还开车去晨练。这么一个要强的人现在要依靠别人,可想而知他的心境。


现在角色互换了。我们曾被姥爷养育,如今要照顾他。心酸吗?这就是生命的轮回。宝贝们已被带大可以照顾渐老的长辈。我现在和姥爷非常亲近,不只是因为经常见他,而也是到了更高的境界。从一周几次到一天三次,每次见面也完全不象从前打招呼就跑开。


我们不再有家庭聚会,因为没人需要以餐厅和美食来表达爱意。家庭聚会似乎包含一种肤浅的爱,而今年我体会到的是真爱和家庭。


My Changing Relationship with Lao Ye 

Arnold 8/20/2014

I see Lao Ye basically every year, and now that I'm older and he is as well, our relationship is changing. Let's start from the beginning. Ever since I was very young, I bet I was the baby and he was the caretaker, looking after a troublesome me. I barely remember anything back then except stories from Mom, but what is important is the feelings I had back then, and because those are lost, too much is rendered useless. 

Next are the vague memories of family reunions and watching TV. All I remember about this period is that I rarely spent much time with Lao Ye. Valuable time at least. I remember the feeling that I was rushing. Through what, I don't know. I just know I was on the 5th floor rushing through something so I could go downstairs to play. So sometimes, visiting Lao Ye felt almost like a burden to me. I'm not saying I didn't enjoy seeing him, but sometimes when I was playing something, I really didn't want to be distracted by having to greet him. In that period, he was like a friend, but a friend not important enough for me to stop my own entertainment.

I separated the previous years into the two groups above, but this year is its own. Next year might fall into this category, but that depends on if we come back at all, and after all, who can predict the future?

This year, gone are the family reunions because Lao Ye's health has gone down after his stroke on New Year's Day. Before, he would go out on his own to play Mahjong with friends, so we, as I said before, didn't see him, and he didn't need us. This year, he needs us. To get out of the house, we need to put on his socks and shoes. He also needs Austin, when heading downstairs, to stand in front of him because he is afraid of tumbling down the entire staircase. When coming back, Austin must push him up. Well, the word "push" is a bit inaccurate. Austin puts his hands onto Lao Ye's ribcage and lifts him up to make him feel lighter. 

Also, Lao Ye has diabetes, so we have to give him insulin shots three times a day, two of which I volunteered to do. His left arm, which rests on a sling, is not only immobile but also in pain. Thus, we wash his right hand and help him change clothes. Mom told me that he, who was such an independent person, was even driving on the day he had his stroke at age 84. It must be sad for such a strong minded person to have to be dependent on others. 

Now, the roles have reversed. We, who were being taken care of by Lao Ye, are now the ones taking care of him. Ironic? It's the cycle of life. Those who get taken care of grow up to take care of others. 

I am so much closer to him now. I see him much more; it's on a whole new level than before. From at best a few times a week to several times a day. Each time is also much longer than before, when I would simply pop in to say hi then leave. We don't have any more family reunions, because no one needs a restaurant and good food to show their love. Family reunions contain almost a superficial love. This, this year, is true love and family.