I’ve been mostly at the hospital these past few days helping to take care of my grandpa and auntie. Aside from spending some quality time with loved ones and catching up on some leisure reading, I’ve also had some time to reflect.
Despite the sterile hospital environment that many shy away from, I’ve started to enjoy my time here. I’ve taken peaceful walks around the grounds, made friends with the nurses and doctors, and even advised a couple on how to prepare their son for school in America. I’ve felt so much love here. Love for the aging father or grandparent. Love for one’s newborn baby. Love for the boyfriend injured in a car crash. Love for the husband ailing from Cancer. For the doctors and nurses who tirelessly work overtime and forget to eat dinner on time, love for their profession and concern for their patients. So many different types of love.
Then I look at my grandpa and grandma, 92 and 80, who have been married for over 60 years. Holding hands, they have gone through the Chinese Civil War, Cultural Revolution, the Great Leap Forward, multiple natural disasters, China’s remarkable economic evolution, and everything in between. Together, they reared 2 bright children, immigrated to America twice and then moved back to China, and were (un)fortunately blessed with a bald, fat, and mischievous grandchild otherwise known as Yours Truly. They never stopped moving. As my grandparents aged, both attended Old Comrade’s University and took up Chinese painting. My grandpa specialized in painting historical figures, grapes, and birds. My grandma painted magnificent landscapes of mountains and rivers. Both had their work featured in galleries in Boston and Toronto. As my grandpa pushed past 80, he could still run faster than me. My grandma learned how to use a computer and emailed/Skyped me regularly.
Now my grandparents are older. My grandpa is more forgetful, and my grandma is more hard of hearing. With old age, its inevitable that health problems will come up. But my grandpa is as happy as ever, just as my grandma has always been shrewd.Their love is still as strong as ever. Ever since my grandpa was admitted to the hospital, my grandma has been at the hospital everyday tirelessly taking care of him. When I look at them holding hands walking down the hall, I am awed by how great a love they have.