Do you ever feel like you have too many balls in the air? All the wonderful inventions that were supposed to make our lives easier, just sped life up to overwhelming. And for seniors the choices are to try and keep up with all the constant changes, or to stop trying all together. Some don't even get that choice.
I know that I feel that if I were to stop trying, the world would speed past me so fast that I could never catch up again. It is scary and stressful. Believe me, the fear keeps me motivated and active.
I am also not ready to become irrelevant. In fact, I am more useful today than when I was younger. I know more, and can teach about so many things. Experiences I have had can be shared so that others may take in what those stories mean to them in their lives. As a society, we tend to not utilize the accumulated wisdom of our elders.
Yes, we lived in another time. But people are people, and we learn from shared stories, no matter the time period. An example would be the plays of Shakespear. They offer human trials, and moral dilemmas that don't change much throughout time.
A delightful woman of 90 years, fully healthy and actvie, left her home last year to live with her daughter. She tried to keep pace with the demands of her life, but finally gave in to an offer of a more peaceful existance. I wish she were still here, but I fully understand why she left.
We get bombarded by mail, email, text messages, videos, work, family, appointments, and chores. And, like I said above, some of these things were supposed to make life easier. Instead, it is life more interrupted; attention more scattered. That, my friend, is stressful.
The young can keep up, but can lose focus. Never before have I heard young people talk about how fast time is flying by them. Now I hear that everywhere. Information overload is sitting squarely on us. The constant demand of our attention and time makes it seem like we have none of either. Stress.
So just consider what it must be like to be a senior, with energy declining. Maybe you have lost some vision or some hearing acuity. Maybe you have less mobility or can no longer drive yourself. And having to wait to be transported by others to and fro is stress on a stick!! Everything takes longer to do and takes more of that declining energy. Naps become important.
Opting out of the modern day world has its pros and cons. That, too, might be stress producing, if you aren't near services. It can be concerning for your family, as well. They will now have to do more for you when it comes to interacting with the world. You will quickly become a stranger in your own land and others your guides, for better or worse. Maybe shedding the need to keep up is worth that. Maybe not. It is a choice we will all have to make in the aging process.
Either choice has its own set of stressors. Life has never been stress free. If you are a senior, or if you deal with seniors, understand that once the choice to withdraw is made, it is likely to be permanent. The will to return has been surrendered.
In gratitude that I can still chase the rabbit.
Linda Mac Dougall
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