I have been thinking a lot about the older people in my life lately. I have been thinking about the seasons of life that we go through. It occurred to me that I actually wrote about it before and so I dug into my posts and there it was, SEASONS OF LIFE, a post I wrote 5 years ago. 5! What!?
Nobody is getting younger. It’s just the way life goes. It also goes by way too damn fast. 5 years ago I was 27 and just starting to see some of what the older seasons of life look like by watching the people around me. Now, in a short 5 years, it has gotten even more real and I will be honest, kinda scary.
Perhaps I am still the over achieving planner of all things, but at what point do we start having real and serious conversations about the last seasons of life? I know that life can end abruptly at any age. Trust me, I know. But for now, in this post, I am talking about loved ones who are in their last seasons of life [elderly]. Shouldn’t we talk about these things while we are all still able to talk about these things?
Things like…What people want in their season of life when they may be dependent on others. Who people want to be dependent on. Where people want to live. And of course, when life ends, what do they want to happen to their body and their belongings.
Shouldn’t there be some sort of knowledge about all of this before we get to that season?
A lot of people find it hard to talk about. Which, I get it, aging, death, and losing our loved ones is a scary thing. But it’s also inevitable. I would much rather have prior knowledge on honoring those people’s wishes and ensuring they are not going through it alone than to be wondering, “am I doing this right? Would they have wanted this?”
With multiple generations often to consider, we have to talk about it. Don’t we?
I have loved ones in their 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80s at this current time. Each one having some worry on my heart at times. Obviously the ones who are oldest take the bulk of it. I not only fear the day their lives end, but I also fear the regret. I think some of that comes from previous experience with losing my grandparents when I was young, before I really was able to get to know them outside of their title to me. I have a significant fear of seeing people fade and be unaware of who they are and who I/we are.
Unfortunately, it is something that has become a reality for us to witness, a little more each passing week. I am trying my best not to be anxious about it, but I still fear it. It just feels so tragic. Right now, we are not being depended on, but one day we might be in that situation. I want to know that I am doing right by them all. Honoring them and what they mean to me.
So the question is, how do we get people who don’t want to talk about it, to actually talk about it?
I am of course welcome to any advice and thoughts, experiences, and the like.