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Old 07-14-2014, 10:00 PM
Location: Sierra Nevada Land, CA
8,413 posts, read 9,165,392 times
Reputation: 13135


Originally Posted by NOLA2SGF View Post
I'm 66 and so far, so good. I understand the OP's concerns. I think we all have them to some extent. What follows is first some general statements, and then specific answers to the OP's concerns. Basically there is a theme in all of this: I plan to spend some money to overcome these obstacles.

WHERE I WILL LIVE: I live alone in a small house with no steps. I will either stay here and have the house renovated to make it more senior/handicapped friendly, or else I will move to another house that is. It would be nice if the house was in a walkable neighborhood, too. I am already looking to see what is out there. I would like to live in my own home for as long as that is possible. If/when that begins to be a problem, I will have to live in a care facility I suppose. But so far, that is not even on my horizon.

STAYING FIT: I work out hard at the gym at least three days each week. I can do more now than I could in my early 50's. Even so, there's a guy at my gym who is 85 and he can do more than I can. If you are healthy you can put off getting weak and feeble to some extent, and he sure has. I have already set up a home gym too, which I can use when I can't go to the "real" gym.

I'VE FALLEN BUT I CAN'T GET UP SCENARIO: My significant other and I do not live together, but we may by that time (or else in adjacent or nearby homes). We plan to check on one another every single day, at least once but usually several times.

Dementia is worrisome and I think would require outside help. He or I would have to detect that and get the ball rolling if the other one is losing mental capbilities.

DRIVING: In about 10-15 years I plan to quit driving. I will walk places, get rides with friends, or take a cab. I don't go out all that much except to the grocery store and to medical appointments, even now, because I love my home and puttering about here. I get a lot of things via Amazon instead of shopping at brick and mortar stores.

COOKING: Since I have lived alone for many years, I already eat foods that are very simple to prepare. I have an electric indoor grill, a ricemaker, a microwave, and so on. I get good nutritious foods from the grocery store, and eat a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables as well as beef, chicken breast, fish, eggs, and shrimp. Plain, simple food can be very nutritious and not as difficult to cook as complicated recipes can be. Plus, I like it. I don't think I would ever resort to microwave meals, though in a pinch I suppose I could have meals delivered.

CLEANING: This is what housekeepers are for. Since I can afford it, I have already hired someone to take care of the yard, and I may get a housekeeper too at some point.

GROCERY SHOPPING: Transportation by walking, rides with friends, or cabs. At the grocery store they have motorized carts that you can sit in, for the disabled or older folks. Maybe by that time, Amazon or other online services will deliver groceries to my house in my area.

Thanks for reading all this. I am still trying to think things through.
nice for you, but you are planning to become old and dependent in 10 years. And so it shall come to pass. My wife and think this sort of mindset is both sad and foolish.

We plan to make the best of it let what will be, be. No plans to be old and dependent in 10 -15 years for us.

Last edited by Mr5150; 07-14-2014 at 10:24 PM..
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Old 07-14-2014, 10:29 PM
Location: Tucson/Nogales
17,451 posts, read 21,283,365 times
Reputation: 24296
I pray everyday I'll be one of the lucky ones!

Slowly crossing a street with my walker, with diminished eyesight: Bam! Thank-you speedy driver!

Climb into bed, not realizing I had left the gas burners going on the stove, I wake up next morning, light up a cigarette, and? I'm on an SST to Heaven or Hell!

I decide, before being forced to give up my car/driver's license, to take one last trip to the grocery store!
"Oh crap, I'm really having a senior moment today! Here comes an intersection! Brake pedal to the right or left?" Vroooooom! Right thru the red light, like a speeding bullet, cremated by a gas truck!"
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Old 07-14-2014, 11:07 PM
Location: New Orleans, LA
1,730 posts, read 3,146,389 times
Reputation: 2955
Originally Posted by Fran66 View Post
Wow. You have thought about it. And I like your plans. [I may print out your post. :-) ]
Thank you! I have to give credit to my late mother. When she was my age her plans were similar in many respects, and she lived a happy, worry free life to age 98. So, she was a good role model for me.
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Old 07-15-2014, 06:13 AM
Location: Backwoods of Maine
7,119 posts, read 8,170,642 times
Reputation: 18776
Few people realize that death (natural death, not an accident) is a process, not an event.

Next time some older person near to you seems to exhibit signs of a "change", pay attention to what happens during the next few weeks. They will likely be unaware of it themselves. Some type of protective mechanism kicks in and makes it easy to give in to nature.

I say this, as so many younger, healthy adults have a horriible fear of death - and this is normal. When the natural end draws near, older people do not feel at all as they did when younger or healthier. The end stage is a natural process, and it is over very quickly for them. It is the rest of us who draw it out in our minds, and feel terrible about it. Don't.
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Old 07-15-2014, 06:22 AM
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My aunt was born with a weak heart, and was protected by her bothers and sister and parents because she was not going to live long. She outlived all of her siblings and all of her doctors and finaly passed at 102 in a farm house where she lived independently until she died. God only knows.
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Old 07-15-2014, 07:21 AM
1,981 posts, read 2,731,788 times
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Originally Posted by Mr5150 View Post
nice for you, but you are planning to become old and dependent in 10 years. And so it shall come to pass. My wife and think this sort of mindset is both sad and foolish.

We plan to make the best of it let what will be, be. No plans to be old and dependent in 10 -15 years for us.
If wishful thinking worked very well -- when it comes to growing old, dying and death -- no one woujd be dead. Well, I'm sure some people have a death wish. I don't think many people ever have.

This isn't a matter of a self-fulfilled prophecy. Growing old, being incapacitated, dying and death are realities. As children, we are prepared for -- and we prepared for -- growing up and leaving home. We prepare for HS and, for some, college and then graduate school. We prepared for marriage. We even purchase life insurance for our spouse and our children in case we should die 'before our time'.

This is simply a matter of looking ahead -- in the same way -- and preparing for the inevitable should we live to be 85-90. And a lot of us ARE going to live that long.

Yes, we all see in the news about people who are running marathons at 70, skiing downhill at 75 and still delivering the mail at 90. But these people are anomalies. They are hardly the norm. Maybe you'll be one of them! Good for you! But the odds are great that you won't be.

I find that having plans for the future -- when I am not able to live independently any longer -- gives me a feeling of security (maybe a false one -- but then who says your wishful thinking isn't false security?) and very freeing.

We all need Plans A, B, C and D. Most of us, after 60-65, certainly need a will. And, if we are living out the rest of our lives in the same place (city), we need to have our burial plans in order and our funerals and plots purchased or our cremation purchased. And, as our adult children have said over and over again: Please clean out before you kick the bucket and don't leave us, after you're dead, to clean up your two-story house with 70 years of your accumulated 'treasures'.

And none of this planning has anything to do with some kind of black magic. After we have whatever plans we can make in place -- that hardly means that we're going to step into the grave tomorrow.
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Old 07-15-2014, 07:39 AM
Location: california
5,672 posts, read 4,893,512 times
Reputation: 6693
From the way of society the older generation are unwanted ,even though it was on our backs the fallowing generation survived.
We live in a self centered society, and even helped culture it.
We've trained our children to be independent and on their own, and that's exactly what they did, what we did what our parents did, but not too long before them they did not.
Families were not culturing this independence from one another, but dependence on one another, and had cradle to grave care through out their lives.
How times have changed.
I don't see an answer probably because there isn't one.
Dad took care of mom during her final moments and I took care of dad in his, but is seriously doubt any off my family will be here during mine.
Though I am doing very well emotionally and work around the property independently I can walk several miles with out any trouble at all , all it would take is an accident of some sort and be stuck in a compromising position for who knows how long.
What gives me value in life, is that I know God loves me, and I get answers to prayer, and have His guidance from time to time, and with my life others can be helped and given encouragement and understanding.
Though it's heart wrenching and depressing some times ,visiting a nursing home brings a smile to those stuck there.
Doing something for some one else by simply being there to listen to them even though you don't even know them is more attention than they get from family often times .
I have 2 friends I visit in a local home and I wish I could spend more time there ,but if I don't take care of my own business i'll be in trouble, in today's society.
The world doesn't give any slack for generosity unless they are taking it. but that's the selfish society we cultured.
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Old 07-15-2014, 08:11 AM
1,981 posts, read 2,731,788 times
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"Thesense of life’s preciousness, which I inhale from the streets on my way homefrom work, is how I survive the daily spectra of disease and death. It is how I maintain my emotional perspectiveday in and day out. Not only do I neverfear the daily reminders of my own frail mortality, but I am grateful for thisexposure, the realization that we are all ultimate HIV-positive, in that we areall going to die sooner or later. Iacutely realize that someday, regardless of my own final disease or injury, I, too,will join my many patients on their sickbeds. The poignant stories transpiring everyday on my AIDS ward, my crucibleof hope and despair, have taught me that having a life that denies therelevancy and immanency of death actually robs that life of the wonder itshould have. I have come to believe thata content life is one that gracefully carries death on its shoulder as a friendand not as a feared adversary."

DanielL. Baxter, MD., The Least of These My Brethren

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Old 07-15-2014, 08:44 AM
Location: Over yonder a piece
3,916 posts, read 4,660,690 times
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Age is relative, and what you do with it as well.

My grandmother lived to 99 years old. She lived in the same small town for 40+ years, until she was 97 years old. She had daily card games with friends that kept her active and involved in her local community, and attended church every Sunday like clockwork. She also had friends that would come and visit her frequently (they were younger - in their 80s, and very active as well). She spoke on the phone every day with several of her friends. She continued driving locally. Since she didn't cook she ate all her meals at a locally owned restaurant and had a regular booth that no one else used except for her.

To that end, had she stayed in her small town she would have never been left to be "discovered" after death because she was active and involved.

However, in 2011 she had a fall and broke her wrist and we decided it was time she be moved closer to family. She was loathe to leave her house and town, since it was all she had known for 40 years, but we were adamant. She moved up north about 4 hours to be near my parents and my aunt/uncle, and then after 8 months I had her moved to be near me (she and I were always close). I moved her into an active retirement community where her meals and housekeeping came as part of her rent. All meals were served in a lovely dining room. She participated in a weekly card game and made several friends with the men and women that lived there. I visited her 3-4x a week during the year she lived in the complex and had her over to my house at least 1x a week for dinner. We talked on the phone almost daily.

Despite only living there a year before her passing, she made a mark and as such I would frequently get calls from her new friends with updates or concerns. In fact, the morning of her passing her housekeeper called me at work to express concern about my grandmother's headache. So did the woman who worked as the receptionist in her building who had seen her earlier that morning. I called my grandmother and she complained of a very bad headache. I told her to take some aspirin and that I would be right over to take her to urgent care. I told my boss I had to leave (she was fine with that) and just as I was grabbing my purse to leave my phone rang: the complex was calling an ambulance because the housekeeper had just found her collapsed on the floor of her living room.

In the end, by the time I arrived at her complex 30 minutes later, my grandmother had already passed away of a brain aneurysm, just one month shy of her 100th birthday. It was completely unexpected and quick - just the way my grandmother wanted to go.

And because she remained active and involved, and continued to socialize and have a regular schedule that everyone knew, she was well cared for even up until her final hour. Her engaging, feisty and friendly demeanor meant she had a housekeeper who genuinely cared for her, and a receptionist who genuinely had concern for her. She was amazing that way.

That's my goal as I get older. Remain active, remain involved, and have a regular schedule that everyone knows. Be nice to everyone. This way if something happens, people will know immediately that something is not right.
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Old 07-15-2014, 10:24 AM
Location: SW MO
23,605 posts, read 31,524,402 times
Reputation: 29082
In less than a month I'll turn 68. My wife will turn 66 shortly thereafter. We are both have physical impairments now which, for each of us, came as a real surprise as a mere two years ago we were both hardy and hale and could go, do, take good care of ourselves, our home and our yards and gardens. What to do? What to do? Well, we now have a housekeeper come in on a regular basis, pay for yard care and if anything significant needs repair or replacement, hire that out as well.

Just before my wife turned 65 and became Medicare eligible she had major surgery, a significant hospital stay, long-term physical therapy and some other issues. Even with decent health insurance we ended up out-of-pocket 10s of thousands of dollars from which we've yet to recover although we continue to build back up the nest egg as best our other and new obligations permit. Thankfully, I can still drive and get around, cook, etc.

We acknowledge the possibility that at some point we may have to put the house on the market and move into smaller, maintenance-free accommodations. Beyond that it's a toss-up. We'll simply do what we have to do. Thankfully, between our pensions and Social Security we have decent incomes and that's a comfort. If long-term care is in my future then it's off to a veteran's home for me if space is available or I simply take necessary steps to check out of the net (military talk for "expiring"). As for my wife, we'll just pay if it gets to the point that part-time home health assistance would no longer be enough.
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