I need a large “senior button” on my computer keyboard to take it into senior mode.
Pressing the button would disable everything I didn’t need including, without limitation, ads, spam, e-mails and anything except what I had specifically included.
The senior button has to be large, clearly marked and perhaps even a toggle switch or a button like the illustration that signals a bus driver that an old person wants off. I need to signal the computer that it needs to stop and let me off.
Pressing the senior button will disengage all the software and hardware, except for the following which would be in large print:
- E-mail from people I select.
- Skype in case my grandkids call.
- The obituary page of the local paper.
- Stock market update.
- Select telephone numbers that by clicking would dial select friends and family members.
- E-mail addresses with a picture of the recipient.
- An onscreen volume control so I can hear.
- Daily menu at the local senior center.
When the button was pressed a second time, it would re-enable the computer so that my grandkids could fix things.
This would be simple.
Think about it. old people suffer from too much, not too little; and not just in computers. Think about the world you occupy. There are too many choices that require too much time to learn.
Restaurant Impossible is one of my favorite TV shows, so of course it got me thinking. Why couldn’t Robert, or someone like him, come in and redo me?
Like the restaurants on the show, I am a mess after 75 years. I am out of shape. My finances are a mess. I don’t even know what all the pills I take are for.
I am in need of redoing! I need to be rehabbed. So, I wrote to Geezer Impossible and offered myself!
I am out of date; although a plus is that I have donated all my stained, checkered pants with zippers that don’t work to Good Will. I now wear relaxed fit jeans. Not much of an improvement, but a start. Gentlemen’s Quarterly (GQ), I am not, yet….. And, the fifty’s may come back.
I need a team to come in clean me up, shape me up, revise my life style, perhaps come up with a new style or at least a theme. Make me a modern “old man.” Are there “theme” old people?
Robert could meet with my family, friends, advisors, etc.; find out what they were doing for me, put them on notice that they need to shape up, then go to work on me.
He could have a group of experts; perhaps a doctor, a financial planner, a lawyer, a geriatric shrink and of course a dietician.
The result would be a new old man; with a modern theme. Instead of walking me through the door of a restaurant, Robert could walk my family through the door of my new living space and show me off. They could all marvel at how old people could be rejuvenated.
It might be necessary to do a series of old people makeovers to determine if this was a viable process. Data is important; and, of course we would need follow-up. How long could I endure my new theme.
The redo might be franchised. Old People Impossible, make overs for those over 75. Maybe even a TV show, preferably in the late afternoon, with wine.
After writing this, I woke up!
Today, old age requires creative thinking, planning and help. There are fewer and fewer do-overs; this is it. I will consider some alternatives; but mostly I will suggest that you think outside the box. As long as you are competent you should exercise your ability to be creative. Use these ideas as a starting point! Where will you live? What choices will you have?
The possibilities are endless; however, there are 5 basic parameters:
- Physical and mental ability.
- Care needed
- Social network, including family, religion, organizations, and other groups.
Take a look in the mirror. Who do you see? Make sure that your mirror reflects you, not the you that you wish you were.
Now for the fun; and, again, THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX. In the future, after you have had tIme to think about this, we will deal with each in a separate blog. With any luck these LIVING IDEAS will offend some of you!
- Stay in your home and share
- Charitable Trust
- Care giver – life estate
- Homeless shelter
- Group home
- Private non-profit assisted living home
- Charitable trusts
- Old mobile home
- Small town
- Camp ground
- Public space
- Trailer on school grounds
- Tiny house community
- Move in with family
- Live on the street
- Do nothing
FEAR is part of growing old. As my granddaughter said: “Grandma, sometimes you have to face your fears.” Most fears can be dealt with. Remember: if you have a fear, someone has a way to make money out of it; and. it will be your money. Most fears either can’t be avoided or have a simple solution. Be proactive and accept the fact that you are old. Think about what might cause you trouble. Plan ahead, but let’s face it, most of us won’t. This blog is devoted to ideas to make your old age an adventure. I am one of you.
Every medical expert agrees that more than 98% of people die. Some even say 100%. What makes you think you will be different. Enjoy life; there is no percentage in focusing on dying. Whatever belief you have, it’s going to happen. Treat “old age” as a new adventure. Is it really any different than any other stage in life?
Falling is the curse of the old. Keep physically fit, have grab-bars, use a cane, get rid of clutter, remember you are old and be careful. Don’t let your ego get in the way of a fall. You may still fall, but the odds will be reduced dramatically.
3. Dementia and Alzheimer’s
The beginning is the worst; you know about it, refuse to admit it and try to cover it up. The end is someone else’s problem. In the meantime do your best to minimize the effects. Exercise, diet, get an ID bracelet or a GPS bracelet. Keep up with the research.
4. Running out of money
Nothing new here. Live beneath your means. You have to be smart to live well if you are poor. The same applies to old age; you need to be smart to live well while old. You are smarter than you think you are; you just need to apply yourself. There are more deals for old people than you would believe; but, again, your ego may get in your way.
5. Falling or being injured when away from home
Carry a cell phone with three telephone numbers coded in under ICE (In Case of Emergency). Use ICE 1, ICE 2 and ICE 3 in case the first two persons are not available. Carry ID. Have emergency evacuation insurance. Use a bracelet to indicate any special medical conditions. Don’t stop traveling or going out just because you are afraid.
6. Moving into a long-term care facility
Have long-term care insurance just in case. Think of it as going to college and living in the dorm. Be active. Try and avoid it as long as possible. Be creative. Maybe you could move in with someone else. And, it probably won’t be your choice.
7. Having no friends or family when you are old
Plan ahead. Go to church. Use senior centers. Make it easy for people to be around you. Don’t be obnoxious or know it all. Take care of someone. Have a pet. You can meet a lot of people walking a dog; and, besides it’s good for you and the dog.
It comes with the territory. Exercise, weight loss and diet will probably help.
Carry a notebook. Carry a tape recorder. Write on your hand. Reduce daily activities to habit. Have a friend remind you. Post-it notes on the fridge.
10. Some yet to be determined disease or injury
You are going to get something, you just don’t know what or when, so…… When it happens, make the best of it. Find a support group so at least you know what is going on and can see how others handle it.
These are just a few of the fears that will haunt you while old. Most of the answers are simplistic and you have heard them before. Prepare for them and forget them. Remember to question everything I say and get expert advice from professionals. Share your thoughts with us.
The important thing is to think outside the box;
I read a lot about elder health. I get a lot of ads and a lot of advice. When I put it all together, I come up with about ten things that I should, and can, do. These are almost universally accepted, free and as near as I can tell, will do you no harm and probably a lot of good.
The amount of each of these that you do is up to you. Even a little bit helps. You can add to the list, but then it becomes cluttered.
How and when you do them is up to you.
The whole idea is not to live longer, but to live better.
- Drink water
- Drink wine, not too much
- Have friends; be a friend
- Think outside the box
- Avoid processed foods
- No clutter
And watch as I attempt to reduce old age to a series of 3 x 5 cards.
Are you over 50, retired and bored? AARP has a suggestion: Mars
Today, they suggested Mars. It appears the ideal couple for this trip is over 50 and has been married long enough to get the kinks out. And since the round trip is only 501 days, if done in 2017, it is less time than you would spend with the Peace Corps. There are probably a few risks, but the Geezer, at 73, is already facing a few risks. Old age is the ideal time for new risks, a lot like your late teens and early 20’s.
There are a lot of plusses. Once you went through Mars “training” you would be in great shape. Your grandkids would really think you were “cool.” All social security could be banked/invested. It beats assisted living. You would have a lifetime of stories and could not only hit all the talk shows, but could “eat” off of your experience for the rest of your life. Any dementia, could be explained by the trip. You might run into a few aliens. And, of course, after the initial phases, it could solve the problem of what to do with old people; send them to Mars.
I can’t see a downside; and, at 73, that’s saying a lot. I expect a call from the Mar’s Mission at any moment.
Outsourcing is all the rage; but mostly has been defined as sending out work to reduce costs. If you are old you should outsource. The reason is to cut costs, but not just in monetary terms, but also in terms of health and wellbeing. You can’t afford to fall; fail to file taxes; or, miss important deadlines.
You have already outsourced. You didn’t do the surgery to implant your pacemaker, you outsourced the job to a surgeon. When you were younger you could do more things for yourself. It was no problem to climb up on the roof on an old ladder and lean over to get the leaves out of the gutter; but, at 73, NO! You can’t afford a fall. It will cost a lot and may be the beginning of the end.
What should you outsource? It depends on the individual, but you should consider the following:
- Anything that involves climbing or balancing.
- Financial care including preparation of your taxes.
- Medical care
- Memory related
Who should you outsource to:
- A spouse, unless s/he is near your age and condition.
- A child – hopefully you have a good relationship
- An accountant
- An attorney
- A close friend whom you trust
- A bank
- A handi-person
- Someone referred by a friend, neighbor or family member.
- Angie’s list
At what point do you outsource? Sooner rather than later.
What if you don’t outsource?
- It may cost you a lot more.
- It may affect your health.
- It will cause you anxiety.
- It may be the last thing you don’t do.
The biggest problem is that you think that you are still competent. You haven’t taken a long hard look in the mirror lately. And, you can be stubborn and obnoxious. The result is that you think you can do something that you can’t.
Think about it.