It was in October 2008 that I wrote post - Loneliness At Old Age. In that I had brought out about life of old couples when their grown up children fly off the nest to another city or country to pursue their own careers thus letting old couples live alone, may be with own choice or otherwise. Least I could foresee at that time that we may be one such couple five years later.
Our son left for Canada in mid Dec 2013 as his organization offered him placement there. His wife and daughter also joined him there in the last week of January, though his wife being here was not much of company for us. That is another sad part which I shall briefly share later. Our daughter stays in Delhi but in another locality. She and her children visit us as per their convenience and we do not interfere in their life. I had told her when she left us after marriage that though we are there for her but that is her new family where she has to make her place with love and affection. So basically it is we two oldies who are in each other’s company now.
Coming to what I said about our daughter in law, we let our son and her settle down with each other. Though we lived together, which was told to her by me as well as our son before marriage so she could say no if she so wanted to, but never interfered in their relations except just a couple of times in eight years of their marriage and that too to ensure that there was no violence. On the contrary her father seemed to take active interest in their affairs. She had a habit of going to her father’s place often whenever she had any difference with our son. Of these, her longest stays there had been twice, a year in the fourth year of their marriage and a year & half before leaving for Canada.
In the first instant she joined us back the day we shifted from the locality we were staying in to the one where her parents stay. Later we learnt that she had told our son that she would not come back to the locality we stayed in as our daughter too stayed there and her children ( 7 years old daughter and 3 years old son at that time ) alongwith their maid used to be with us after school for few hours till they left for park to play from where they went home.
On the second instant she left for her father’s place after some differences with husband. She told us that she needs a break and would be back in a week or ten days but did not return. We had advised our son to sort it out but he was initially reluctant saying that he had told her if she went to her father’s place again he would not ask her to return. However after a couple of days he spoke to her asking her to return but she did not. It was only after 3 months or so that she told our son that she would join him only if he separates out from us. She insisted that he take a house close to her parents so the little one could go to their place after school. We advised him to do so for the sake of little girl. We left it to our son to sort it out. It was only about 4 months ago when our son got this offer of going to Canada that she started visiting on weekends as she was keen to go with him. She continued staying with her father even after our son had left and visited us off & on till she left.
We missed our granddaughter on both these occasions. I had met her father a few times during first couple of months in the first instant but he did not show any keenness for her to return. On second instant, without our son’s knowledge, I met him a month after she had gone to see if we could sort it out but he made very derogatory remarks about our son that I made me not to speak to him thereafter.
It appears that our son had not been keen to separate from us while being here as he feared interference of her father. So he waited for this offer.
Our son wanted us also to go with him but we declined as we are keen to let them settle down. Though we do feel lonely but are happy that they are together and little one has love of both parents. We have spoken on Skype and little one seemed so happy to be there. We wish them to have a happy married life. We do not intend being there with them inspite of our son asking us repeatedly. We pray to God that all goes well now onwards.
So we are in the band of old couples staying alone at their own due to own choice.