In the past few years we have faced the in-surge of technology like never before in history. As a young adult it was an imperative to follow along and assimilate these essentials of modern lifestyle. Yet, among elder folk I sensed some hesitation with emerging technology. For them it is too much information to handle. A smartphone is too magical to demystify.
I found my parents learning the ropes of new tech at their leisure as situation demanded.
But I also sensed that I did not take as much of an enthusiastic initiative to educate them as they did when I was learning as a child.
We often relegate the learning ability of the elderly. We think that curiosity, wonder and fascination are traits found exclusively is kids. But off late I realised that it is even more fascinating to see an elderly person learn something they thought they would never be able to. A kid can learn to make a video call in no time. That’s the reality he grows up with. But for an elderly grandmother to wrap her head around the fact that she can speak in real time with her granddaughter and watch her in live video would indeed seem wizardly. To imagine a new paradigm and learn to be a part of it would be like a new awakening to the elderly.
I remember the first time I booked a cab with my smartphone, my father couldn’t believe it was possible. To watch him is utter disbelief at that moment and then see him learn to do the same over the course of time was amazing to witness.
I realised how it is even more fascinating to watch the older folk in awe. And it is our duty to expand the purview of their understanding of the modern world.
That’s the least we can do as a mark of gratitude for the countless things we learnt from them.
It is never too late to learn. And it is an honor to be able to teach and share. One grows old when he stops learning. The longevity of the elders we love is in a way in our hands.
I sign off with sincere hope of receiving a video call from my mother.