Helen and Margaret are two people I discovered this past weekend (click here for a visit to Helens site.) Prepare to be blown away. Not necessarily by the fact that Helen is 82 years old or that she runs a blog that has in excess of a million hits. But more from the fact that this woman and her friend Margaret have been friends for over sixty years, still talk to each other on a regular basis, are quite vibrant people and have opinions worth hearing!
I’ve been in long term care for thirty years and it never ceases to amaze me, when people tell me that they don’t want to get like that; that being old and in a home somewhere. At what point do they think getting old like that will come? When they get gray? When they can’t play racquetball three times a week? When they need help taking care of their bills? Bottom line, old is a state of mind. You’re old when you determine you are old folks. I know some thirty year olds that could be in homes already and some vibrant ninety years olds that are only hampered by the effects of aging on their bodies; their minds are clearer than many of yours!
Take a look at Helen and Margaret’s site. It’s amazing. Almost like sitting down and talking to someone who has as we boomers use to say, got their shit together! In the book and references section of the Time Pieces there is a book called, “Why we hate us;” By Dick Meyer, a former CBS news correspondent. He takes a serious look at why everything is so upsetting to us anymore. Helen and Margaret are a key to understanding that very problem. Meyer lays it on the line; you and I have become lost because we in our efforts to be all grown up and to do things on our own got disinherited from our social inheritance.
Helen and Margaret have social inheritance. They know where they came from, have maintained ties throughout their lives to people around them and have pretty much a historical social structure to draw on to make sense of the world they live in. They think and live pardon the term; “old School!” How about you? How many of you knew your grandparents? Could drive over to see an uncle or aunt today or call them and have them say, Hey how you doing, how’s your Mom and Dad?
In the world we live in today, being tied to family is more of a negative then it is a positive. Having just been though the biggest family holiday of the year, many of you may find that hard to believe, but why? As the saying goes, you can pick your nose and your friends, but not your family. All jokes aside, they are a serious part of who you are, have become or not become. What does that mean to your peace of mind? Join me the next few Blogs as we take a look at social inheritance. Its a lot more important than you may have ever thought, and feel free to comment. Oh yeah and by the way, Helen and Margaret’s post wishing that Sarah Palin would shut the hell up and go away is a great read!!!