Can you imagine yourself older? Can you imagine yourself as an Elder? Do you even want to?
Yes, labels (such as “elderly”) matter, for better or worse. They are also kind of dangerous, and as a culture, we’re hooked on them. They’re like a verbal system that dehumanizes communication, much as the medical model, or “systems”, dehumanize caregiving.
I was recently involved in a minor dust up on Twitter regarding the use of the word “elderly.”
Over the years I have evolved from using that word routinely to avoiding it completely. Why the change?
I graduated college December 21, 2012 and was summarily catapulted into real life. Certainly the past 22 years have been real; I have had my share of trials to date, but until now I had been living the life of a child. Childhood, in my view, was characterized by a lack of independence and the accompanying stress. As a child proper I depended wholly on my parents for support and guidance and as I grew this reliance diminished but never went away fully.
They don’t say it out loud, but the can’t-miss message is that it’s not good to be old. They never give a reason but it is obvious that old people behaving like – well, old people somehow offends the sensibilities of the world at large and especially younger people.
Asking older adults to hand over their keys is a difficult but necessary part of aging. It is so difficult because it is often a family member or physician, not the elder, who has to make the decision to end an age of independence.
Peter O’Toole, who turns 80 in August, announced this week he is retiring from theater and film. The renowned stage and movie actor received eight Best Actor Oscar nominations in his extensive career and was awarded a lifetime achievement Oscar in 2003. It’s not easy giving up your life’s passion and moving into a new phase of life, whether you’re a blue collar worker or an internationally-acclaimed film star.
SONG FOR ANDREE GEULEN My neighbor Bill Pederson, who spends winters in Arizona, sends along this video made in celebration of a remarkable woman’s 90th birthday. During World War II, Andree Geulen joined an underground group in Belgium to rescue…
In January, residents enjoyed the monthly potluck celebration of birthdays with cake and ice cream. Residents provided an array of assorted main dishes, sides, and desserts for all to enjoy. Below, Mr. Kim celebrates his January birthday and is recognized as … Continue reading →
Highlights: The Lunar New Year was celebrated by over fifty residents and staff with the finest food, flowers and song. Talk Story storytelling class continues. Instructor Alicia writes: “We are preparing for our February Live Event. My students are very … Continue reading →
Tribes of Eden by Dr. Bill Thomas. So much to read; so little time. Of the 200000 or so books published each year (that's just in the U.S.), I learn of – oh, maybe …www.timegoesby.net/…/tribes-of-eden-by-dr-bill-thomas.html
Did you know that renting a car with a debit card will hurt your credit rating? I didn’t. So will closing a credit card that has a zero balance.
At least that’s what AARP tells me and for now, I’m taking their word for it. But let me back up for a moment.
As a lot of people reading this blog know from personal experience, barring the unlikely event of winning the lottery or receiving some other kind of unexpected windfall, what money you’ve got right now in retirement, is pretty much what you’re always going to have.
VIRAL VIDEO ELDERS Remember the elder couple on YouTube last year who had unknowingly recorded themselves trying to figure out how to make their new webcam work? The video went viral. You can see it here as have 9.5 million…
Lots of activity at Park Plaza! There was a dance peformance by Toti, Armenian concert pianist Harout Senekeramian played at Thanksgiving, Pauline helped residents get needed administrative help during Service Hour, Monica introduced Tai Chi for arthritis, the Crafts Class made art and gifts out of recycled … Continue reading →
Rosa Rio in 1934 at the Fox Theater in Brooklyn, where she had performed as the house organist. Photo: St. Petersburg Times Thanks to Bhob Stewart for providing a link to this great 9-minute video about the late Rosa Rio who … Continue reading →
The Gardening Project at Piedmont is a hands-on, once a week community project that teaches residents how to garden, work with the earth and grow food to eat. “That’s what I love about living in California…we can plant and grow food … Continue reading →
The gift-giving holidays are fast approaching and if you did not max out your shopping budget on black Friday and cyber Monday, this is annual TGB list of gift ideas for old people might be useful. Last year you, dear…
Many current elders know from dealing with aged parents how fraught the issue of driving is as people get old. There is good reason to fear giving up the car keys: depending on where you live, doing so means your ability to move around becomes severely limited, possibly dependent on the kindnesses of family and friends or not easily affordable to hire taxis or car services.
A long life ought to entitle one to a dignified old age. We may not be able to cure diseases such as Alzheimer’s but we can offer our elders a life that is rich with kindness, patience, encouragement and appreciation. The creation of such a life is just what Green House homes were designed to do.
UPDATE: With the exception of YouTube, just about all online video formats that allow embedding are of questionable quality and cause a variety of problems including slowing page loading, hanging halfway through and/or not playing at all. This is why…