Neither do we like to talk openly nor feel comfortable talking about our worst fears and concerns in life. It is purely out of our anxiety and apprehension about the future that gives rise to our fears and concerns. These matters reside somewhere at the back of our head and still have the power to disturb our peace and overwhelm us with feeling of trepidation. These raise their ugly head high above the ground to scare us every now and then. We just try to keep them under check by relegating them to the background and not thinking about them too often, hoping that these never come true or see the light of the day. We try our best to divert our attention by keeping ourselves occupied with other pressing problems of the day. We will do well to understand that even if we turn a blind eye towards them, these are not going to vanish or fizzle out on their own. There is no easy resolution to these fears and concerns but somehow, we need to keep the faith and make ourselves strong enough to bear them and still come out unscathed once these have blown over.
The biggest fear and anxiety that anyone can ever face, pertains to the eventual loss of one’s parents anytime in future. Losing one’s parents is an inevitable truth in the cycle of life and death created by God. The old progeny is replaced with the new one. We all bow down low to this unwritten rule of nature. There will be a day when the parents will leave their children for their heavenly abode. It remains a perpetual and a perennial cause of worry and anxiety to the children. Death, of not just the parents but anyone in the family, is utterly gruesome. A single thought about it is enough to scare and unsettle us immensely and give us sleepless nights. We know it for a fact that death would eventually come to everyone ever born into this world as he or she ages, it is only a matter of time when it occurs. Even when we know very well that it is a reality that no one can shrug off, but whenever the loss occurs, it shatters everyone deeply, including one’s children. It is an emotional, physical and mental loss unlike any other that can never be made up for. The loss leaves a deep void in children’s life that cannot be filled. It is a deep wound and an indelible scar that no amount of time can heal. Parents spend their entire lifetime caring for their children giving them a great start in life. They take care of every small or big need of their children throughout their lives. This is the reason why we often say that the life of children is indeed a gift from their parents. The parents shower all their love and resources on their children so that they can grow up to be healthy and successful human beings. My greatest wish would be that there is not a single day when I have to live my life without my parents.
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Am I getting old and senile, is another fear that rattles my mind? Everyone tells me that ‘I am not’ but somehow, I don’t believe them. I guess, it might be because they don’t want to sound rude. If it wasn’t the case then why is it that I feel so strongly as if old age is just around the corner, waiting for the right moment to knock on my door. When I observe myself in the mirror, I see that I have started losing my hair and I am getting bald. Very frankly, I feel my memory is not all that great anymore as it used to be a decade back, sharp and pointed. And of course, my physical strength seems to have ebbed, though a little bit. I feel tired climbing a few stairs while earlier I could manage a long flight of stairs in one single breath. Why is it that I feel perpetually tired for no apparent reason? I am not as desirable as I used to be in my youth. Being desirable, in many ways, is a soothing and a warm feeling. Something is definitely wrong? Has old age set in, is another fear that haunts me?
In some years from now, I might be in the grips of debilitating ill health and disease. It may so happen that my medical expenses outstrip my food and grocery bills for the month. I will not be able to walk freely without help. I might need the assistance of a nurse on whom I will depend for my daily tasks. Being dependent on someone puts one in a pitiable condition. Not being able to take a few steps and use the washroom on your own is the worst form of dependency. I console myself thinking that the situation might never come to as bad as this. Another consolation lies in the fact that it happens to everyone no matter if you are wealthy or poor, man or a woman, here or abroad. It is that ineluctable cycle of life that everyone has to go through one day and this is a reality. I am not the only one to sail alone on a tumultuous and a stormy night. I tell myself, since we all sail together in the same boat, so let me just sail through the storm with confidence. No matter what, I will live through the situation boldly keeping my head held high.
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Will my children have a secured future is another fear that I harbour. What profession will they take up and more importantly will they be happy in life? I have made great efforts to inculcate good values and provide good education to them so that they grow up to be healthy and educated individuals. Will my children turn out to be compassionate or insensitive? I hope that they will never walk the path of crime as many do. Only a parent knows the sacrifices it takes to give them a great start and a holistic upbringing. I wish they do well in all their exams and come out with flying colours. There have been days when I have been by their bedside in times of illness, praying incessantly for their early recovery. I wish that my children do not miss out on even a single opportunity that takes them closer to their goals. God has been great, keeping His benevolent eye upon them and showering His blessings and I also wish He continues to do so forever till the end of eternity. In my heart, I wish that their wishes and dreams always come true. Let God be with them always.
Am I still employable is the biggest challenge and a concern? Are my skills still relevant in the employment market? I have done well in my profession until now but how long will it last is no certainty. The entire education system and kind of careers available today have undergone a sea change, nothing resembles what it used to be in yesteryears. The kind of jobs that are highly coveted as well as well-paid are the ones that did not exist say 20 years ago. I am referring to the jobs in the field of science and technology. The body of knowledge and course curriculum in every stream be it engineering, medicine or even business management, are dramatically different from what we have studied in our heydays. There is a constant anxiety about the new breed of professionals that may soon overtake the older generation and make them thoroughly redundant. If one is not on the top of his career by the 40s, he might soon be shunted out or rebooted. Otherwise we guys may soon find ourselves jobless in a great organisation that we took pride in building it and making it what it is today. How sad it would be if this were to be the case.