Sunday, July 30, 2017

Should our children care for us in our old age?

I have been reading lots of blogs that state that the writers are not interested in being a burden on their children near the end of their lives. They plan on living in independent style until they can be pried out of their homes. After that they see themselves in "stepped up care" (an upper middle class way of nursing homes).
My own mother has chosen this road. She lives in an independent care facility.  She is in her late 80's now and seems to be doing well. Except. She is not so keen on how many people die around her---all of the time.
She does not want to be dependent on any of us. She made that abundantly clear many years ago. We are lucky that my dad made sufficient funds as to make that possible for her. She lives, safely, in an upper middle class facility, with a large buy in, amongst people "like her".
But,
is that really what we should be doing?
I know of no other peoples who place their elderly in facilities so they do not have to care or encounter them.
Think about it.
Yes, end of life nursing care, but not facilities that you enter in the end years and live with only the other elderly until you die.
One of my friends asked recently, "What about multi generational housing?"
"Oh no", says another friend, "you would be setting yourself up for abuse at the hands of a loved one."
Really?
There is no abuse at these facilities? (Not my mother's of course.)

Do we, as a society, accept that elderly are useless?
That they (we) are too much trouble
That they (we) have nothing to offer to the young except a check for the birthday.
That they (we) are too ugly to deal with because they (we) remind them that someday they will be old and needy sometime.
Is society setting 80% of the population up for failure?
About 20% can afford the independent living.
The other 80% will be hoping to be loved enough that someone will bring them soup when they are weak and tired. If they do not save enough (which is an astronomical sum if you are looking for a "good facility"), will they be ignored because, "they should have known better."
Are the elderly really a burden
whom the next generation sits and waits until they pass so that the money can be freed up?
Are they a burden, like children are burdens?
Oh wait---those people are put into care as well.....

Yup, it lays heavy on my heart.

Monday, July 03, 2017

Blueberry picking is like teaching children to read

The blueberry picking is fine this year.
When I am home, my mornings consist of gardening,
and blueberry picking.

The bushes are perfect for wandering
and morning prayer.

The berries that are ripe, roll right off into your hand.
Just a gentle touch.
Much like how children learn to read.
When they are ready, they just roll into the book.
People often think teaching a child to read is magic.
Maybe it is.
After years and years of doing it, my experience was that they read when they are ready.
If you force it early,
they will sour,
just like those slightly red blueberries.
If you hold it away too long
their brains get mushy,
just like those old berries on the bush.
The nice thing about those old ones
when they roll off
they are sweet as can be
just like those old readers.

Anyway-- Her Squash, hibiscus and peppers. All ready for the week of growing in the garden of life!