Around 26 years back when my maternal grandfather passed away, my maternal grandmother came to stay with us. Having lived in a nuclear setup, none of us, i.e., my parents, we the children, or our grandmother were used to living in the joint family setup. We visited our grandparents during the summer vacations and they visited us once in a year or 2 years. That one month of summer vacation would be a total bliss and that was that!
As we all started to adjust to the new setting of living together, there were issues as it generally happens when three generations coexist together. My grandmother was getting older, was bereaved, was upset; we children were teenagers and growing up with opinions and rebelliousness of our own. The person who got sandwiched in between was my mother. She had a hard time trying to strike a balance between her children and her mother; sometimes neither of them trying to understand the other! At that stage of her life, my mother was dealing with certain health issues, raising 3 kids, managing the house on a “decent” salary, and other issues and amidst all those sandwiched between two generations!
Present day: Now I am the mother of a teenage son and a tween daughter. In the past 26 years, times have changed a lot with the kid-parent equation undergoing a drastic change, but certain things haven’t changed. Now I am the one who is the sandwiched one between the older generation and my kids. There is a clash again between the thought process, the way of living, the attitude, the rebelliousness of the younger generation and the rigid, opinionated older generation; neither of whom would budge.
I believe this “sandwich generation” will always remain that tries to please and adjust with both the generations. I believe both the younger and older generations need to adjust, with the older generation trying to adapt with changing times and trying to let go of some of the rigidity and the younger generation trying to be more patient!!
The shoes are the same, only the feet that wear them change…