August 19, 2009

“None are so old as those who have outlived enthusiasm” Henry David Thoreau, Author.

I know. It sounds awful. But I’ve noticed this lack of enthusiasm afflicts some folks no matter what their age. “Been there, done that.”

My Dad’s favourite saying is he “doesn’t buy green bananas”. Meaning, he may not be around long enough to eat them. He’s always laughing when he says that. Thank goodness he doesn’t mean it.

He just finds it hard to believe he is as old as he is. His body reminds him that he is 89, but his mind refuses to accept it. So he does things in order to “live by enthusiasm”. While in Cayman with my brother he went snorkeling for the first time at 88. He still cuts his ½ acre lot by himself on a riding lawn mower. Having successfully passed his driver’s test 5 times now, he recently bought a new used car and continues to live independently since my Mom passed away 3 years ago.

He also knows and acknowledges when he needs to ask for help. He would always say to me, “Make smart choices”, and now he reminds himself of the same thing.

No more climbing on ladders to clean out the eaves droughts or paint the house – he gets help for those chores. Living alone in a rather secluded house, he has a personal alarm system so he can call for help if he needs it. Since he doesn’t like cooking for one and was concerned about eating poorly, he’s asked me to make him some freezer meals that he can easily cook or warm up or he heads up to the local Chinese buffet for a great meal.

So what’s the message in this blog? Don’t give up life’s pleasures because you can’t be bothered or think you are too old or are just bored. Try new things and be sure to keep doing all the things that give you pleasure. Make smart choices so you can continue to live the life you want, where you want.

Trusted Transitions can help you define what you could do to make life in your home more enjoyable, allowing you to stay there longer. Many times it is simple alterations that bring such ease.

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