Old Peoplegreenspun.com : LUSENET : Freedom! self reliance : One Thread
Something that's been heavy on my mind lately is old people. How sad it is to see so many of them sit at waste away. Even the country folk. I used to clean for the elderly in the big city, and it was a shame to see most-not all- but most of them doing nothing but running to the doctor once every couple of weeks, watching t.v. all day and being so miserably lonely cause their families don't pay any attention to them.
It seems that they're so medicated/etc. that they don't have the wisdom that the elderly used to have. The doctors run their lives.
The young people haven't been taught to seek their advice.
I do know a few exceptions, but they're rare and of rare personality. Much more independent.
Maybe it's cause I'll be 50 this year. Maybe I should be glad for the chemical poisoning so I can't take all those drugs. Of course, they probably take me out and shoot me I guess.
Anyway, guess I needed to dump. Any comments?
-- Cindy (S.E.IN) (email@example.com), April 04, 2002
I know what you mean. I think the saddest thing on the world is when you feel like you are no longer needed or you don't matter to anyone. People have a huge desire to feel useful. I just hope that when I am older I will still have many projects and new and exciting things to do, and I hope I die in my garden instead of some stinking hospital. I tell my kids all the time not to even take me to one when I get old. I don't really want to know everything that is wrong with me!!!!! Death is a given so I think people should just accept it and be ready...
-- Melissa in SE Ohio (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 04, 2002.
I've wondered if being plucked from the family homestead in favor of full time nursing care doesn't sometimes trigger the onset of alzheimers? It seems so disorienting to some older people when they have to leave a long time family home. (I do know that it is sometimes necessary, and that caring for older people can be hard work.)
It does seem to be true that the more active a person is able to be into old age, the more alert and happy they are.
When my dad bought his homestead, a friend warned him that he would never run out of things to do on it. He laughed and said he hoped that was true.
-- mary (email@example.com), April 04, 2002.
I agree, Cindy, the older people that I can relate to are the ones that didn't let anyone tell them what to do in their lifetime!! Independent, as you said.
The ones I see that are pitiful are the ones who followed what everyone ELSE told them to do - the ones who run to the doctor constantly, who are afraid of "what the neighbors might think", the ones who say, "Oh I can't do that, my children won't let me"!!! My CHILDREN??? That will be the day, when my children tell ME what to do!
I can just imagine what my dad would think of that - he died at the age of 87, just the way he wanted to. He was unloading wood out back, sat down to rest, and was gone. He NEVER went to doctors, or worried about his health. He would have been entirely contemptuous if a doctor would have told him to slow down and rest more. He ate whatever he wanted to (as far as he was able to without ANY teeth - I remember when he came into the house after wearing his new "store- bought" teeth for a day. He said,"NOBODY should have to go through this misery", took his teeth out, put them in a jar on the back porch, and never wore them again!), did whatever he wanted to, and made his own decisions. Stubborn old German! But I admire his independence.
(I also remember that as he got older, his neck became stiff, so as he did farmwork, he wouldn't turn his head as he backed up the tractor, he would just back up slowly until he bumped into something, then go forward! He was FUNNY!! And he also loved humor and jokes - I'm sure that has something to do with keeping a youthful spirit.)
Perhaps as we get older we shouldn't crave or expect someone younger seeking our advice to give us a reason to live - perhaps we should just be an EXAMPLE. We are our own reason to live. We can share what we know if we're asked, but I don't believe we can EXPECT anything from anyone, even our children. In my opinion, expectations cause a lot of misery in this world.
I will be 62 next month, and I'm praying for at least another 20 years. Somewhere else on this forum I told how, a year ago, I felt I was stagnating, but "something" told me I needed a challenge, and I bought a 150-year-old house that needed EVERYTHING. I'm still in the middle of ripping and rebuilding, but what a neat challenge it will be for years to come! Yes, sometimes it's scary, but everything, ALWAYS, has a way of working out for the best if we follow our heart. I don't have the time or skills to do electrical or plumbing, but (after praying) angels sent me a wonderful young man who can do all these things, and he's working VERY reasonably. Prayer and faith and a sense of humor have made everything possible.
Have faith! You don't have to be like the old people you see! Make up your mind you won't be, and be an EXAMPLE of courage and love and joy!
(And by the way, THANK YOU to everyone on this forum who has helped me in some of the decisions on this old house! And BLESSINGS to you.
-- Bonnie (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 04, 2002.
(p.s. I should have said "thank you to everyone on THESE forums" - forgot which forum I was on - senior moment I guess......
-- Bonnie (email@example.com), April 04, 2002.
Thats why I built container and window box SFGs for some of the residents at a local nursing home. Tending a few vegetable plants and flowers gives meaning to their days. The medical head was so impressed with the difference in their attitudes, he convinced the owner to install a greenhouse on premises.
-- Jay Blair in N. AL (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 05, 2002.