Getting ‘old’ is hard work. Not only do you have to think about yourself but, if you’re lucky enough to be in a relationship, you also have to think about that other person.
When you’re young, you’re much more self-centered and tend to feel immortal. As you age and your body fails to keep up the pace, you start to look at things in a different light. Suddenly, life has an expiration date and you cherish things more because it might be your last time doing or seeing them.
So, savor every moment and don’t take anything or anyone for granted!
I find it amazing that the very people (our parents and grandparents) who taught us life lessons can be so hypocritical when it comes to the ‘new’ generation.
I was taught:
No sleeping together before marriage
Marriage before children
Go to college and then get a job
No car till you can afford gas and insurance
Now, my parents (I have no living grandparents) allow their grandkids to do pretty much whatever they want. There are suddenly no more rules or restrictions and they even help finance some of these questionable choices.
What’s a modern parent to do… Is turnabout fair play? Perhaps that dreaded nursing home is starting to look a bit more tempting! 😉
If you’re still at an age where you’re working full time, you probably haven’t thought much about retirement. Unless, of course, you’re miserably unhappy at your current job. Or you’re close to retirement age and you’re just counting down the days or years till you can sit home and collect Social Security.
In today’s society, with people living longer lives, there’s a strange new phenomenon whereby as soon as someone retires, they immediately look for part-time work. I guess, for some people, the idea of relaxing and enjoying your ‘golden years’ is unheard of and, after all, why would someone want to spend all their time at home… with their loving spouse or, perhaps, traveling the world together??
In my opinion, some people just aren’t capable of being happy and others are only so when ‘they’ are the most important person in their life!
Some things are better left alone. That might sound defeatist but there are just times when one must leave well enough alone.
Here are a few examples concerning older people:
If you ask for a different medication, you may suffer worse side effects.
If you send out appliances to be fixed, you will find yourself without them for possibly long periods of time.
If you wait around for perfect weather conditions, you will be spending a lot more time stuck inside.
If you wait for others to do things for you that you’re capable of doing yourself, you will lose your independence at an alarming rate.
Most aging Americans today refuse to let their limitations rule their lives. Instead, they find ways around their disabilities and power ahead. I hope my generation has as much moxy and determination as theirs. It’s to their credit (those that are thriving) that they’ve defied the odds and entered into a new world of technology and hope!
Ever notice that there are more new drugs on the market every day? And just the side effects, alone, can make your pulse quicken. In 2016, we should be curing diseases not still suffering from them. Why is healthy, affordable living so out of our reach?
Watch any black and white film (and even most current ones) and there’s not an actor to be found without his/her lips wrapped around a cigarette. People sometimes have to work at jobs surrounded by carcinogenic substances because that’s all they are qualified to do. We can’t start living in bubbles so what’s a person to do?
It’s true, for the most part, that we are living longer but we’re not fully prepared to care for our loved ones when they reach those new stages of life. Once upon a time, your grandmother might have lived with you and helped raise you while your parents worked. Don’t these same selfless people deserve our love and support? Not everyone can afford to take on that responsibility but… isn’t it worth looking into other options?
It’s not unusual to see multiple videos on social media showing stray animals being rescued and given another chance at life. Shouldn’t we do at least that much for our elders?!
What’s the difference between ignorance and apathy?
I don’t know and I don’t care.
Sadly, that’s a more truthful answer than you’d like to believe. Elderly people get a bum rap. They’re made fun of and they’re underestimated. Older folks have always been depicted as decrepit and powerless in movies and on TV. They are often seen as victims and tend to be the brunt of youngsters’ jokes.
But the joke isn’t on them… It’s on the jokesters themselves.
Celebrities like Betty White and politicians like Jimmy Carter can teach us all a thing or two. They’ve not let time slow them down. They are as active and as productive as ever.
So, next time you see an elderly person (possibly even walking with the help of a cane or a walker), don’t assume they need your pity or your assistance. They may surprise you!*
*holding the door open for YOU or even bopping you on the head with their handbag like Ruth Buzzi @Laugh-In