Small Adaptations, Unimaginable Sacrifices & Hope

Small Adaptations Because of the potential to spread Covid-19, most all of us in my area have been encouraged to maintain social distance recommendations and to stay at home. I leave the house to pick up prescriptions for my husband, to get outdoor exercise, to walk the dog and greet neighbors who are out and about, and to do grocery shopping. I miss getting together with friends and going out to Saturday breakfast with my husband. However, I’ve stayed in contact with people using social media and video. I’ve attended meetings and have even enjoyed happy hour with a couple…

Continue Reading Small Adaptations, Unimaginable Sacrifices & Hope

Creating Community Conversations

In November, I applied for an Oregon Humanities Conversation Project. I wanted to bring groups together around a common topic as a way to address stereotypes based on age. I did get an interview and drove Portland (about three hours north from where I live) to participate. The three younger women who conducted the interview were great. A couple of weeks later, I learned my project proposal wasn’t selected. Nonetheless, the experience was very positive. I also realized I could develop my own conversation projects. Age Stereotyping Conversation Last night I spoke to a community group of older women (mostly…

Continue Reading Creating Community Conversations

Countering Loneliness with Intention

A Pew Research study suggests that the older we get, the more likely it is that we’ll spend an increasing amount of our time alone.  A March 19, 2019, Time Magazine article reported that one in three seniors are at greater risk for heart attacks, strokes, and depression because of loneliness. Not surprisingly, holidays can be particularly hard for seniors who feel isolated or are widowed. One Widow’s Strategy for Countering Loneliness During Holidays My eighty-something neighbor, Sally, has been a widow for several years. Unlike some other people who struggle with holidays because of loneliness, my neighbor looks forward…

Continue Reading Countering Loneliness with Intention

Purpose: A Key to a Long and Satisfying Life

Various studies have suggested that having a sense of purpose is important for healthy living, longevity, and life satisfaction. Having a sense of purpose is also an important component of a satisfying retirement. Those who don’t find a sense of purpose in retirement are more likely to experience depression and regret than those who do.Even before I officially ‘retired’ a year ago from my teaching career, I had started to develop a sense of purpose for the new chapter in my life. I asked myself questions about what I thought was really important to me. I also considered what I…

Continue Reading Purpose: A Key to a Long and Satisfying Life

Embrace Purpose and Be the Difference

I have read several articles this week about people who lived their lives with intention and purpose – people who accomplished ‘big’ things for the greater good. Like you, I can think of certain people I’ve either known or know something about who left noteworthy legacies.Then I thought about the regular, everyday people I have known who have lived with purpose but may never have their name etched on a plaque or mentioned in a book. Each of these people has made a difference in their own way. They have mattered and so do each of us.The Sweetest ManEddie lived…

Continue Reading Embrace Purpose and Be the Difference

Greedy Old Geezers We’re Not

With an aging population, some school districts have discovered that community support for bonds is becoming a hard lift. In some communities, older households outnumber households with children. I live in such a community. When the last school bond failed by 65% two years ago, some community members blamed the “greedy old geezers” in our community for failing to support the last facility improvement effort. Now our school district is considering putting another facility improvement bond measure up for a vote. Some of the older residents in my neighborhood have already started an opposition phone tree. What could have been…

Continue Reading Greedy Old Geezers We’re Not

Adjusting to Change and Developing Resilience as We Age

When we were children, we had to adjust to a variety of classroom environments, new rules, and new restrictions on our personal freedom. As young adults, we had to adjust to the realities of working for a living. Many of us also had to adjust to living with one or more people at some point in our lives. We’ve all spent a lifetime of adjusting to change.Adjusting to life after 50 is no different in many respects. From our own life experience, we know that sometimes adjustments are frustrating and we don’t want to deal with them.I’ll confess that after…

Continue Reading Adjusting to Change and Developing Resilience as We Age

Like an Unexpected Storm, Retirement Can Challenge Us in Unexpected Ways

Last week our local weather service projected that our area would experience from one to five inches of snow. We ended up with about a foot of wet snow throughout our county. Trees and power lines were down throughout our area. We lost part of our tall, Moon Glow Juniper hedge. I tried to save some of them by knocking off some of the extra snow with a heavy, industrial broom. Unwisely, I stood on a plastic chair while it was snowing to reach some of the juniper branches. It only took an instant to fall and bang up my…

Continue Reading Like an Unexpected Storm, Retirement Can Challenge Us in Unexpected Ways