Wednesday, August 06, 2008
See what it's like?
…Was it Paul Newman who said, “Growing old ain’t for sissies”?
…Even HA takes her time clumping around to go to the door, singing out, “Coming, coming….”
…John Leland, writing in the NYT, Aug 3, 2008, talks about a program called Xtreme Aging designed to show young’ns what it’s like to be old'ns.
…Xtreme Agers put sharp kernels of corn in their shoes to experience sore feet. They wear weird glasses to distort their vision. Cotton balls in the ears blur hearing, and up the nose, screw up smelling. They also wear latex gloves with knuckle bands to simulate clumsy hands.
…This program is used at hospitals and in nursing homes, but also in some businesses that deal with older people. (Reportedly AARP was in too much denial to try it.)
…Apparently, participants put on all this gear and then try to button a shirt or find a number in the book.
…There is also a program in which young people list their most cherished freedoms and possessions and then are told they must give them up.
…Some this seemed pretty extreme, she means Xtreme, to HA. Sure, you have to give up things, like driving or doing your own clothes shopping. But we aren’t exactly talking Sophie’s Choice every day of the year.
…HA helps take care of her mother, who suffers from dementia. In the last two weeks, she has taken her mother through a hospitalization and change of residence and physician.
….Friends, family, and professionals can help shield older people from some of the more wrenching aspects.
…Just don’t call older people “Q-tip heads” as someone did in the story. It’s stupid and could stand to be funnier, too.
…You are never too old to edit.