Pages Navigation Menu

Observations and commentary on aging, caregiving, and the complex journey through the second half of life.

Second-Half of Life Blog

When The Last Parent Is Gone

Posted by on May 5, 2015 in Aging Parents | Comments Off on When The Last Parent Is Gone

When The Last Parent Is Gone By David Solie When the last parent is gone, Your heart cannot right itself, Things that should help, Heeding warning signs Repairing loose ends Bracing for impact All prove shallow comfort. For the end of having parents Activates the orphan gene Endlessly looping you between Just here and never coming back, Releasing a fog of regrets Choices unable to settle Moments still getting away. When the last parent is gone, Your brain cannot right itself, Death moving you to the Head of the line marked Next to leave,...

read more

Poetry and Aging Parents, Part 5

Posted by on May 2, 2015 in Aging Parents | Comments Off on Poetry and Aging Parents, Part 5

Aging parents face an uneven future in which one will be left behind. FD Reeves’ poem “Home in Wartime” contains two elegant and inspiring stanzas of instructions for both possibilities… From “Home in Wartime” By FD Reeves If I die first, gather the lost years with the late September apples. At sunset ghost me beside you on the steps to watch the tangerine-lavender clouds turn gray. Go on, go on. If you die first, the sheets as cold as fish, the dogs whimpering their loneliness each morning, the old walls cracking the silence— I’ll lay...

read more

Is the doctor a “good fit” for an aging parent?

Posted by on Apr 30, 2015 in Aging Parents | Comments Off on Is the doctor a “good fit” for an aging parent?

Navigating the healthcare system involves dealing with a wide range of physicians and support personnel. Not all physician partnerships are successful. Issues like difficulty reaching the doctor, hurried office visits, confusing medical jargon, limited explanations, and inefficient billing support can undermine an aging parent’s experience. The challenge is not to find the perfect doctor with the perfect support staff, rather to find a way to evaluate the experience, identify what’s working, set realistic expectations, and explore work...

read more

Boomer Pedal Bike Option: Kinder Mechanics

Posted by on Apr 28, 2015 in Boomers | Comments Off on Boomer Pedal Bike Option: Kinder Mechanics

http://www.davidsolie.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Boomer-Bike-Option-Medium.m4v Older bodies need exercise options. The bikes of youthful riders, thin tired road machines and rugged mountain climbers are a poor fit for bad backs, worn knees and stiff necks. Boomers have come to a point in their lives where they need a bike with kinder mechanics. Enter The Townie from Electra Bicycle Company. I’ve ridden a Townie for over ten years following back surgery and can attest to its comfort, stability, and fun factor. Yes, it is first and foremost...

read more

The Wrong Future

Posted by on Apr 23, 2015 in Boomers, Middle Age | Comments Off on The Wrong Future

Caregivers experience a wide range of stressful situations that require a singularity of focus. While hyper-focus works in the short term, in the long term it takes an insidious toll. Health, activities, friends and finally the future all fall by the wayside and with them the loss of hope. It’s akin to losing a paddle in white water. Caregivers wind up with a default future where events dictate the outcome. It may look like the wisdom of acceptance but it’s only half the work. It’s lacking the critical process of identifying...

read more

It’s about health span, not life span…

Posted by on Apr 21, 2015 in Boomers, Middle Age | Comments Off on It’s about health span, not life span…

This charming six minute video from BBC radio restates the goal of healthy living as “health span” as opposed to “life span.” Preserving quality of life and avoiding financial ruin appear reasons enough for anyone to adopt a moderate lifestyle of healthy habits… View...

read more

Poetry and Aging Parents, Part 4

Posted by on Mar 31, 2015 in Aging Parents | Comments Off on Poetry and Aging Parents, Part 4

Adult children live in a bittersweet world of loss and gratitude regarding aging parents. Barbara Crooker’s poem All Saints Day captures this emotional mixture as it attends her mother’s leaving… All Saints Day By Barbara Crooker It’s one day past the Day of the Dead, and this has been a bad year, six funerals already and not done yet. But on this blue day of perfect weather, I can’t muster sadness, for the trees are radiant, the air thick as Karo warmed in a pan. I have my friend’s last book spread on the...

read more

The Art of Holding Space…

Posted by on Mar 30, 2015 in Aging Parents | Comments Off on The Art of Holding Space…

Heather Plett’s insightful and moving article on holding space, What is means to “hold space” for people, plus eight tips on how to do it well, is a primer on the dance of compassion for those who are leaving as well as for those of us, for now, who remain...

read more

Honor Their Words…

Posted by on Mar 2, 2015 in Aging Parents | Comments Off on Honor Their Words…

At some point you have to be their voice. No one else can do it. This article by Dr. Mikkael Sekeres director of the leukemia program at the Cleveland Clinic reminds us that we are called to honor the words of those we love amid heart break and fierce attachment… Deciding On a Parent’s...

read more

No Longer Safe To Drive

Posted by on Feb 18, 2015 in Aging Parents | Comments Off on No Longer Safe To Drive

At some point it becomes painfully obvious. Maybe it’s the near misses, another fender bender, traffic tickets, getting lost on errands, poor night vision, or increasing confusion. Whatever the mix of warning signs, the message is clear and deeply concerning. An aging parent is no longer safe to drive, and something has to be done about it. Statistics confirm the urgency to act. Motor vehicle injuries are the leading cause of injury-related deaths among 65 to 74 year olds and are the second leading cause (after falls) among 75 to 84 year...

read more