In today’s age of high-definition PVR’s and the luxury of watching television on demand to fit into my schedule, I rarely watch commercials anymore, and that suits me fine. But there is one ad I have seen recently that I think I could watch every day.
I won’t reveal whose advertisement it is; let’s just say it is for a financial company portraying the benefits of a home renovation loan. In this particular case, the son in the ad has just renovated part of his home to make a self-contained apartment. We see the son showing his aging father around the apartment, who appears very impressed with what his son has done. The father touches the new kitchen cabinets and remarks that the apartment should fetch good rent.
It is then that the son reaches in a box bearing the financial company’s logo, and comes out with a set of keys. He then gives the keys to his dad, telling him for the first time, “The apartment is yours, Dad.”
Then follows his father’s reaction of surprise, and he reaches out and hugs his son.
I swear, my heart gave a little leap and a flop each time I have seen this ad. Of course, I know why; I lost my dad nine years ago to ALS, when he was 69. I never got to see my father anywhere near as elderly, and yet healthy, as the gentleman in the ad. My mother didn’t fare much better, being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in her sixties, and now in the latter stages in a nursing home.
I didn’t write this post out of self-pity. I just wanted to impart to those of you who read this, the fortunate ones who still have a parent or parents who are loving, healthy and of sound mind, to treasure them. Please don’t take them for granted. You have something, and an opportunity that I will never know: the ability and the joy of giving back to those who brought you up and gave you their all.
For me, watching that commercial reminds me, and lets me dream – just for a few minutes – of what could have been.