Saturday, 7 April 2012

G is for Growing Old Gracefully

Writing these posts about the sixties and seventies has made me think about being older. What does growing old gracefully really mean?  Do I have to sit at home in my twinset and pearls and be prim and proper? I do hope not.
 I think back to my mum and aunts and their friends when they were my age, they did seem much older both in style and attitude. I could not imagine them sitting typing on a computer or using a mobile phone but maybe that's because they never had the chance to try them out.
These days we seem to have a different outlook from that of my parents generation and stay younger in our ways for longer.  Maybe it was just the times in which they grew up in.
 They went through the pains and tribulations of  the second world war some even had to be evacuated  to another part of the country far away from their families.Flora's Story
 Going through something like that must have had an effect on them, maybe it made them old before their time.
There are of course lucky people who into their nineties and beyond are still living a fruitful life refusing to give in to "getting old" which  is wonderful, everyone would love to be like them given the choice.

I don't want to grow old gracefully or otherewise. In fact I don't want to become any older, I'm fine as I am, thank you very much.
Okay so maybe I will  have to do this growing older thing. Here is what I don't want.

1. I don't want my sight or my hearing to deteriorate any more than it has
2. I don't want my hair to go white or my teeth to fall out.
3. I don't want to forget who I am or who any of my family are.
4.I don't want to be dependant on my family for my day to day existence.
5.I don't want to be in a nursing home unable to do the smallest thing for myself.


I don't need to be able to run a marathon or climb the Matterhorn but I would like....

1.To have good enough eyesight to read a book
2.To have good enough hearing to hear my granddaughter's laugh.
3.For my brain to still work well enough for me to write stories.
4.To have the sense to dye the white hair and have dentures if and when I need them.
5.To be independent and not be a burden.
6.To stay in my own home for as long as I live.

That's the way I want to grow old gracefully Am I asking for too much?

36 comments:

  1. Oh my goodness, you're so right. I was hunting through some family pictures the other day and found one of my mother when she was my age (late 40s). She looked ridiculously old to me. Partly that was a most unflattering hairstyle and dress, but partly it was the general perception of how you were supposed to be at that age. That has changed I think and I'm very grateful for it.

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  2. It probably had a lot do with style and of course being expected to stay at home ,be a housewife and not venture into the big wide world to work.

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  3. I hate the thought of growing old gracefully. My mother died before she even reached 60 but always seemed quite old in her outlook on life. My dad, however, reached 82 and stayed young at heart until the end. I wonder if that's because he spent most of his life working which meant being surrounded by lots of people and my mother was a housewife. I don't know.

    My hair is probably already white under the blonde. I never want to find out. ;)

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  4. I do think it can make a difference if you're out and about and mixing with younger people. I always said I had no grey hairs but when I decided not to colour my hair blonde for a while I had quite a few so I became a redhead!

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  5. Loved your post. Thanks so much for visiting and commenting on my blog. I'm glad you enjoyed the darling poem. I did want to clarify that it was not my work. I laughed when I saw it and just knew I had to share it! Have a great day! Donna

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  6. Thanks Donna. I did think you had written it but good on you for finding such a gem anyway. Thanks for popping by.

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  7. I think those are quite reasonable wishes. I hope they all come true for you. :-)

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    1. Hi Misha thanks for stopping by.I hope they came true too.

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  8. Likes and dislikes way to go enjoyed your post

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  9. I think those are all reasonable wants for our Golden years. If only we could make it so with just a wish.
    Stopping in via the A-Z blogging challenge and have decided to follow.

    Bev @ Blue Velvet Vincent

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    1. Yes it would be lovely. Thanks for following I will drop over to your blog.

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  10. I’m not going to grow old gracefully, at least that’s my plan… if the goddesses allow it – I would however be happy to grow old disgracefully and as the poem by Jenny Joseph – ‘When I am old…’ says: “I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves
    And satin sandals, and say we've no money for butter.”

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    1. That poem sounds great I'll have to look for it. Thanks Kay.

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  11. I agree with you 100%. Except I'd add "I don't want to have to wear diapers!" :)

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    1. Hi Wendy ,yes I forgot about that delight didn't I?

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  12. everyone will grow old like me though I am still young
    do check out my G at GAC a-z

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  13. Great post...I'll be 65 this year and have outlived my parents and two husbands. I plan to ride from Chicago to Los Angeles via Route 66 on my motorcycle next year...yup, age 66. I refuse to get old.

    Oh, did my first zipline in Alaska last year and hope to sky dive this June. ;-)

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    1. You sound amazing Donna. I could see you climbing the Matterhorn. Go Girl!!!

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  14. I'm fighting it all the way as well!

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  15. Great post and good luck with not growing old gracefully.
    It looks like there's lots of us around that agree with you.
    I'm only in my 50's and feel like I've already given in to some, don't talk to me about teeth :( , yet happily getting much younger with others. It helps having many friends at least 10 years younger than I am.

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    1. Hi Lynne I'm only in my early fifties too. I don't feel old most of the time,it's all the reminising about the seventies it just make it seem so long ago.

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  16. I agree with you that it would be good to not become dependent on the family but is that realistic if we live into our 80s and 90s? Mr A's aunt is 100 next Tuesday. She can hardly hear or see and is, by necessity, in a home but she's happy to still have her life. I suspect we'd feel the same if we live to such an age.

    I often think about the way my mum's generation at my age behaved much older than I do and I don't put that down to the war. I think a lot is down to our expectations of ourselves and society's expectations of our age group.

    I can't post this up without commenting on your phrase "People born in the late fifties, sixties and seventies are bound to have a different outlook..." People born in the early 50s do too!!!!!

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    1. Ha ha ! I take your point, my post is now suitably (Ihope) ammended so not to offend people born in the forties and fifties!

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    2. You didn't have to amend your blog post. I was only teasing.

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    3. I know your were teasing Ros but I improved it.

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  17. That is a long wish list :-)
    But then if we look back all this adds up to only one thing "Good Health"
    I am reminded of one of our family friends who is 91 and still very very busy. She does all sorts of work at home and makes money. The work includes painting, knitting, craft work, stitching ... the complete works. Did write a blog on her and you can find a link to that in my Blog Post for C.

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    1. Hi, yes you're right.My mum always said, as long as yoou had your health nothing else mattered. She was wheelchair bound even tually and in a lot of pain but she still had her wits about her but this made her quite frustrated at not being able to get about as she used to and going to her clubs etc. and having to become dependant. Your friend sound amazing I will go and read your post.

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  18. I hear you! What scares me is losing my mental capacity. I don't want to forget my memories or be a burden on those around me.

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    1. Thanks Talli.I've seen it happen to too many people. My husband's aunt has dementia now and she was the last person I would have thought this would have happened to, it's very sad.

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  19. Nursing homes suck! I hope I never wind up in one. As a former med transcription worker, I have read so many horror tales that I am convinced that people go there solely to die of heartache.

    Now they are craftily called...extended care facilities. Bunk! They don't care!

    It's sad that parents raise their kids and that some of the latter do not return the love when their parents are no longer capable of taking care of themselves.

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    1. Well let's hope we don't end up living in one.

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  20. Age is a funny thing it seems we are older for longer but youth is still characterised by the same amount of time.

    I used to work in a nursing home and vowed to never end up there, I remember this whenever I yell at the kids and then I am instantly nice! x

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    1. They say be nice to yuor kids as one day they will choose your nursing home and in a lot of cases it's very true.

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