Fully credentialed and not really prepared this particular article of catastrophe’s cousin; came fully sourced by yours truly.
Fact is the most rapidly growing age group in America today are the old elderly; seniors 85 and up. Fifty percent or more of our aging population will need assistance throughout the rest of their days with us.
What does it all mean? It means if you are an adult child 45 or most likely you find yourself doing some of the following:
- Cleaning the house you grew up in. Everything looks the same except the persons living there.
- Walking dogs that belong to your once youthful parents. Walking dogs that tend to be neurotic because, like their owners, they don’t get out much.
- Becoming a permenent fixture at the local hospital. For myself, that particular hospital is Concord Regional Hospital, Concord NH. Great staff and good food by the way.
- You speak louder than ever thought possible because no one in the house that saw you grow up can hear. Or, in my case, with my father, selective hearing becomes an issue.
- The strangest of things begins to happen, once an uncaring and cynical New Englander, you find yourself watching more attentively to those around you, particularly the elderly. You hold things dear and you let go quicker.
- Where you once wowed your parents with stories that turned their hair gray you have now found the shoe on the other foot. You beg your father to not attempt the installation of an outdoor light fixture. Plead with him to not dangle himself off a step stool fully knowing his gait is unstable.
For many of us born in the peace loving times of the seventies the pill of taking care of aging parents has been bittersweet. My mother stubborn in her Irish ways, fading into the twilight years with Chronic COPD, holds on to life with every inch of her pure soul. There are no courses designed to make this transition easy. The discharges from hospitals become routine and the dreaded phone calls of family doomsday to siblings become old hat.
Editorially, the only way this writer has found her way around ‘Caring for Our Aging’ parents is simply the Golden Rule. What way would I wish to be treated if in the same situation? Would I want to still have the respect of those who may see me as a burden?
Damn straight I would. I watch more carefully. I attend to others with less difficulty. I am more mindful of my parents for they brought me into this world and most likely, can still take me out.