Sunday, May 26, 2013

Memorial Day 2013: A Reminder of Aging Parents and Their Sacrifices-- Past and Present-- And My Uncle Max

On Memorial Day I think about my Uncle Max. He was a WWII Veteran. He was with the Signal Corps in the Battle of the Bulge and what I know about his service during the war was a result of fuzzy memories when I was young and family conversations when I was older.

Uncle Max was a mild-mannered, sweet man, would give the "shirt off his back" to anyone. It was hard for me to envision him fighting. I don't think one fights in the Signal Corps unless necessary, but I do think one has to be very brave. If he was very brave it wasn't apparent when he finally came back home.

I say "finally came back home" because Uncle Max came home a first time. I was very young and asleep, but I remember someone woke me up and carried me downstairs to see him when he came into the house that night. I remember there was a flurry of activity and a lot of conversation earlier that day, preceding his coming home; but I was too young to know why. I only knew something big was happening.

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Motivating Our Aging Parents

Many years ago at Teachers College, I had one of those outstanding professors, the ones we never forget. For a semester, as aspiring counselors, we studied the techniques of counseling with him.......

We entered Dr. Pat's classroom the last week of the term. A short list of counseling "Don'ts" was on the board (see above). He thus provided us a practical list and discussed the importance of each "don't." I remember these "don'ts" as if it were yesterday. There was another listed--"don't use guilt." Remembering what not to do became normal in my counseling....and ultimately in my every day conversations with others.

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Thursday, May 23, 2013

Aging Parents Making the Effort? Where There's a Will, There's a Way

         Why do some aging parents make the effort, while others don't?

We see older people with the will. They no doubt aren't as famous as James Levine. Yet they have that something within that pushes them forward and won't let them quit. Sr. Advisor R is one.

I think back to Sr. Advisor R's rehab after breaking her 97-year-old hip (femur) and her observations of the daily small group physical therapy sessions she participated in. She was the oldest there, yet she observed some younger people found the physical therapy very difficult and didn't even try. (We were told, she tried encouraging them.)

That said, why do some do, while others don't make the effort? Does it go back to People Change, Not Much? If they didn't make the effort when they were younger, can they can't be expected to change when they're older?

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Sunday, May 19, 2013

Short Haircuts for Women Over 60

                                    Look good, feel better...

...has been one of the consistent themes to help parents age well. Isn't it uplifting to look in the mirror and like what we see? We all know that a bad hair day--or just plain bad hair--makes no one look good or feel very good, so naturally this article grabbed my attention.

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Why an iPad for Aging Parents Who Can Go to an Apple Store?

I pay extra not to take ads on my blog. But the help one gets at the Apple store reminds me that having a smart parent go computer-less when the iPad could change the game, so to speak, is leaving a large segment of the population computer-illiterate. While other tablets have similar capabilities, the iPad gets my top billing today because of the service and resulting peace of mind--especially for older people.

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Thursday, May 16, 2013

Seniors' Insecurities--What We Should Know to Help Parents Age Well--continued

Are we aware of our parents' insecurities or do they cleverly hide them? 
Why do they do this?
Because of: pride, our youth-oriented culture, denial, valuing independence

What are the insecurities?
Concern about meeting responsibilities, looking old,
acting old, forgetting, having an accident, losing mobility, losing sight, losing control and probably most of all, fear that their children will make them move.

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Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Aging Parents--Seniors' Insecurities We Should Know About

Regardless of feelings and specific age, even boomers (and of course old people) develop insecurities they neither had nor thought about while younger. At a certain age many make efforts to cover up insecurities so as not to seem "old."

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Friday, May 10, 2013

Help Aging Parents: Smartphones for Seniors

Is now is the time to expand older parents' capabilities a bit and provide then with more fun and opportunities by gifting them with a simple-lish smartphone? That said, my caution holds--give this gift only if you think they'd be agreeable. That could involve a trial run. For example, going to lunch with them and including a stop at the ATT,  Apple or whatever store to check out the smartphones below (without making a commitment) makes sense.

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