Nothing is impossible, the word itself says I’m possible!” Audrey Hepburn
We were created for relationships.
Some of you may remember the television sitcom Golden Girls. These retired women (60 and over) were all aging differently both in age and intelligence. Dorothy’s mother, Estelle, a feisty Italian woman with stories of Sicily, lived with them. She was in her late 80s. They were hilarious. The younger one, Blanche, rich and beautiful debutante, was still searching for the man. [restrict] The woman, Betty White played, was the dumb one, a real crack – tiptop of an actress. They fought, talked, and laughed together. When they reminisced, the picture was in black and white. They took care of each other and protected each other from foolish choices. They were financially comfortable with their monthly social securities and lived off their retirement pension. They hired a gardener and a housekeeper and cook. They were so funny with stories that made you laughed until you cried. When one had a problem, they would sit around the kitchen, eat cheesecake and talked it out. They learned not to be disagreeable even when they disagreed. When one didn’t come home, they would all go out in the dark night and looked for her with Dorothy tagging her eighty something year old mother behind her. They were all aging gracefully laughing, crying, reading, and loving in their little circle – their home away from home. They were aging smarter, not alone. They became a family.
My mother was afraid that I would be alone because I’m not married. I talked to her about John, the Revelator. When Jesus was on the cross about to breathe his last, he made sure his mother had someone to care for her. He charged John, the youngest of all the twelve, to care for his mother. Tradition tells us that John was about 18 years old when he left his father and their fishing boat to follow Jesus. At the cross, John would have been 21 years of age. John took Mary to Ephesus and took care of her until she died eleven years later. He buried Mary in a cave in Ephesus (Turkey). Mother thought I was fibbing. I told her about the books I’ve read and what I learned in Bible School of things insignificant to the gospel, therefore not in the Scripture. “Edil, a Dios a mo send ra chad el take care er ngak. Lak momdasue er sei.”
Statistics show that women live longer than men. These days it’s difficult for grown children to care for their aging parents. Our lifestyle has changed rapidly and will continue to change for the better. It’s inevitable. Young women go home after work exhausted. She still need to fix dinner and attend to her children and her husband. She really has no time for her aging mother, who has been tucked in her room, lonely, in need of a visitor. If she lived in a home with other Golden Girls she would always have company. Her children and grandchildren can visit on weekends or holidays without hustling.
The men in Didrangmatl will too grow older and won’t be able to drive there in the morning for coffee. They too will need a home where they can wheel their chairs, or walk with their canes, to the veranda for visits and talk about the good ‘ol days.
It’s a fine way to kick the bucket… laughing with friends as your last memory. Indeed, we need to rethink of the aging and their mental health. That’s what Jesus did! Why can’t we? [/restrict]