Spiritual Landscape of Aging: A Tragic Loss

[Exploring Life] It is with a heavy heart that I find myself writing about this tragic loss; Andy Blackwell, a vibrant young man of twenty, suddenly and unexpectedly died in an accident. Andy is the son of one of our friends. Although I only had the pleasure meeting Andy on a few occasions, I was immediately impressed by his exuberance and love of life; his spirit was both unique and uncommon. Even though I did not know him as well as I would have liked, I feel compelled to write a tribute to the life Andy Blackwell… [Continue reading…]

 

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Reinventing Old Age: The Good We Do When We Work Forever | The Business Desk with Paul Solman | PBS NewsHour | PBS

Marc Freedman: I think we’re in the middle of restructuring what a life looks like in the context of much longer lives. You can’t just fold, spindle, stretch and mutilate a life course that was set up for 20th century life spans for 21st century spans that ultimately will last 100 years. You’ve got to rethink the whole process of education, of productivity, and balance the working lives over much longer periods of time as well as human capital development.

via Reinventing Old Age: The Good We Do When We Work Forever | The Business Desk with Paul Solman | PBS NewsHour | PBS.

DYER: Longer life could delay retirement | Column | Opinion | The London Free Press

But it has now slowed down to about the same pace as in the older developed countries. Of course, there is a rather large economic problem hidden in these statistics.

The proportion of the adult population that is older than 65 years old, once only a small fraction of the whole, is now heading toward being one-third of the total.

It is simply not possible for all of them to retire and be supported by the two-thirds who are of working age.

Something has to give here, and it is probably the retirement age.

Increasing numbers of older-than-65s are continuing to work, at least part-time.

In fact, the latest British statistics show that almost half of the increase in employment since the beginning of the recession in 2008 has been of people older than 65, mostly in self-employment or part-time work.

Welcome to the new world.

via DYER: Longer life could delay retirement | Column | Opinion | The London Free Press.

Why does society treat old people so shabbily? / Features / Home – Morning Star

Crabbit Old Woman

Phyllis McCormack 

Date: 1960s

What do you see, nurses, what do you see? What are you thinking when you’re looking at me?

A crabby old woman, not very wise, uncertain of habit, with faraway eyes?

Who dribbles her food and makes no reply when you say in a loud voice, “I do wish you’d try!”

Who seems not to notice the things that you do, and forever is losing a stocking or shoe…

Who, resisting or not, lets you do as you will. With bathing and feeding, the long day to fill.

Is that what you’re thinking? Is that what you see?

Then open your eyes, nurse… you’re looking at me.

I’ll tell you who I am as I sit here so still, as I do at your bidding, as I eat at your will.

I’m a small child of ten with a father and mother. Brothers and sisters, who love one another.

A young girl of sixteen, with wings on her feet, dreaming that soon now a lover she’ll meet.

A bride soon at twenty – my heart gives a leap, remembering the vows that I promised to keep.

At twenty-five now, I have young of my own who need me to guide and a secure happy home.

A woman of thirty, my young now grown fast, bound to each other with ties that should last.

At forty, my young sons have grown and are gone, but my man’s beside me to see I don’t mourn.

At fifty once more, babies play around my knee, again we know children, my loved one and me.

Dark days are upon me, my husband is dead. I look to the future, I shudder with dread.

For my young are all rearing young of their own, and I think of the years and the love that I’ve known.

I’m now an old woman and nature is cruel. ‘Tis jest to make old age look like a fool.

The body, it crumbles, grace and vigour depart. There is now a stone where I once had a heart.

But inside this old carcass a young girl still dwells, a now and again my battered heart swells.

I remember the joys, I remember the pain, and I’m loving and living life over again.

I think of the years all too few, gone too fast, and accept the stark fact that nothing can last.

So open your eyes, nurses, open and see, not a crabby old woman… look closer… see me.

via Why does society treat old people so shabbily? / Features / Home – Morning Star.