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Old 05-09-2014, 06:24 PM
 
Location: Waterville
332 posts, read 428,380 times
Reputation: 775

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Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
A dear person in my life died this past week at 82. A wealthy man and philanthropist, he took meticulous care of himself, eating small portions and regular meals, regular exercise, lots and lots of community involvement every day. I was unable to attend his services and so did not learn how he died (I'd seen him recently, so it wasn't cancer).

In contrast there is my mother who lived ten years longer than him, came from a much lower status and wouldn't recognize a health food other than commercial oatmeal or Skippy peanut butter (I have to laugh at so many of us boomers with our exotic supplements, expensive hemp hearts and chia seeds, etc). She didn't exercise and was a recluse. No hobbies whatsoever. Why did she live ten years longer than him? Not genes; her parents and grandparents died in their 60s and 70s. Was being a really crochety demanding personality what kept her alive all those years?

Wow, that's an odd case. I would like to say that it is the power of narrative. She wanted to keep turning the page to see what happens next.

Oddly enough, having an endless supply of complaints does seem to have an enlivening effect.
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Old 05-10-2014, 04:52 AM
 
Location: Florida
19,821 posts, read 19,916,125 times
Reputation: 23222
Is it age that matters?
Isn't the mental and physical capacity that we are concerned with?
I think it's more a matter of under what conditions would we want to live or not that matters...not how long.
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Old 05-10-2014, 09:39 AM
 
10,360 posts, read 9,388,551 times
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A couple a know both are turning 99 this year, still living in their own home and for the most part, healthy. Their adult daughter spends a good deal of time with them, and a friend or neighbor will check on them (someone always stays overnight).

Neither participated in any type of exercise program; he was with the fire dept until his retirement 40 yrs ago; she never left the house to go to work.

The wife never drank or smoked. Husband drank only on a few social occasions, and also never smoked.

They'll be celebrating their 74th wedding anniversary this year.

Both still have very positive attitudes and don't really think that much about their age.
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Old 05-10-2014, 10:30 AM
 
10,818 posts, read 8,069,111 times
Reputation: 17029
Quote:
Originally Posted by old_cold View Post
Is it age that matters?
Isn't the mental and physical capacity that we are concerned with?
In many cases, no.
Mental and physical capacities are scant consolation when you've lost your peers and loved ones and you feel increasingly out of touch with the world.

Certainly there are nonagenarians who don't miss or mourn these but they're the exception.

Think about the people you've known who have lived into their 90s. They've lost spouses, siblings, all their close friends, and too many have buried one or more children. Loved ones who have not actually died are often infirm or ill and suffering.

When I look at the people I love, I don't want to be the last woman standing. I don't want to live to see my children and grandchildren as elderly and middle-aged. There are so many things worse than death.
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Old 05-10-2014, 10:59 AM
 
10,818 posts, read 8,069,111 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by katie45 View Post
A couple a know both are turning 99 this year, still living in their own home and for the most part, healthy. Their adult daughter spends a good deal of time with them.
Inspiring story but can't help wondering just how much time their 60+ year-old daughter spends with them, tending to their affairs, and worrying about them. What is the quality of her life?
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Old 05-10-2014, 11:49 AM
 
Location: NC
720 posts, read 1,485,881 times
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Mom is 88, lives in her own home,drives, does her own finances,etc. Her brother is 92 1/2, lives in his own home with his wife, the sad part is his loss of vision, he was chopping wood and doing home maintenance until his sight got too bad.
Mom smokes like a maniac, doesn't exercise or drink, eats a terrible diet, her brother=no drinking or smoking, good diet. So who knows? Both have all their marbles.
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Old 05-11-2014, 06:30 AM
 
10,360 posts, read 9,388,551 times
Reputation: 15973
Quote:
Originally Posted by biscuitmom View Post
Inspiring story but can't help wondering just how much time their 60+ year-old daughter spends with them, tending to their affairs, and worrying about them. What is the quality of her life?
Their daughter is single and since this is her hometown she has many friends to socialize with; plus the fact there are others who take turns. She has never felt that she has sacrificed any part of her life and thankful she is available to help her parents.
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Old 05-11-2014, 07:28 AM
 
Location: Florida
19,821 posts, read 19,916,125 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biscuitmom View Post
I don't want to live to see my children and grandchildren as elderly and middle-aged. There are so many things worse than death.
To each his ( or her) own, I suppose.
One child is an AARP magazine recipient and shortly the next one will be...statistically speaking, past middle age.
I doubt I'll ever see a grandchild be 'elderly' but have no problem with experiencing them as middle-aged people.

And while I agree there can be things worse than death, I am sure glad I don't view my descendants adding birthdays as being one of them.
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Old 05-11-2014, 08:34 AM
 
Location: State of Being
35,885 posts, read 67,186,293 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by old_cold View Post
To each his ( or her) own, I suppose.
One child is an AARP magazine recipient and shortly the next one will be...statistically speaking, past middle age.
I doubt I'll ever see a grandchild be 'elderly' but have no problem with experiencing them as middle-aged people.

And while I agree there can be things worse than death, I am sure glad I don't view my descendants adding birthdays as being one of them.
Same here . . . I feel the most important "one thing" I have done on this earth was raise my son.

I know not everyone feels that way. He is 30 and continues to be the joy of my (and hubby's) life.

One of the reasons I hope to live a long and healthy life is to be there for my son. We are close, we listen to each other's opinions and advice. I would have chosen him for a friend if I had met him "out in the world." We have fun together and I hope we will always find ways to have a good time together. I want to be part of his life, his wife's life and his children's lives. If he doesn't have kids - that is okay with me - I have never envisioned being a grandmother as some goal, lol.

My first goal is to live as good of a life as possible with hubby. He has health concerns, which we are addressing in every way possible, hoping that he will be able to enjoy more years on this planet. He is the love of my life so every year he is granted is a gift to me, as his spouse. Of course, caretaking is a lot of work and NOT where I expected to be at this point in my life . . . but I sure will take this part of the journey with as much grace as possible -- because it is my journey together with my dear hubby.

So yes, I want to live as long as I can - to as old of an age as possible - as long as I am able to contribute to the JOY in my family. That includes being elderly, wheelchair bound, frail health . . . as long as my cognitive faculties are intact, and as long as my family is enjoying having me around. I have a lot more to give in this lifetime and hope I will be able to do that for a long time.

I would prefer assisted suicide if I were dying from a terminal illness and not cognizant. Otherwise, I want to live every day for as long as God allows me time on this planet.
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Old 05-11-2014, 05:14 PM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,985,208 times
Reputation: 15649
Quote:
Originally Posted by foglover View Post
Wow, that's an odd case. I would like to say that it is the power of narrative. She wanted to keep turning the page to see what happens next.

Oddly enough, having an endless supply of complaints does seem to have an enlivening effect.
City Hall was her favorite target of complaint. Whether it was trees on the city's treebelt outside her house needing a trim, the escalating trash fees, a streetlamp out, the schoolyard across the street being rowdy after hours, something the mayor did or said, she'd be on it giving the poor receptionist hell. And then her daughters had to hear about all this by phone for weeks. She watched the 'hood like a hawk, and knew everybody's business by imagination or gossip. She'd eat half a p-butter sandwich and a cup of coffee for dinner as she watched out the window. In her odd case, that was the ticket to old age.
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