good, long life
Norwalk Citizen News
other words, it's change that keeps us energized while living a long life.
At age 71, Stewart cites her mother who lived to 93 as a role model.
along with Pulitzer-Prize winner Anna
columnist and author, have been recently talking publicly about the
challenge of maintaining physical, mental and social fitness as one ages.
Stewart, who has been divorced for over three decades, is even exploring
the possibility of meeting someone through Match.com. She is chronicling
her efforts publicly through current appearances on the Today Show. Her
public efforts are quite admirable. It takes guts at her age, not only to
go on Match.com but to do it publicly.
week, she reported she put up her profile on the dating site and has
received 20,000 responses, which were narrowed down to 1,000 and then to
five, of which she will respond to two. According to Match.com, Stewart's
quest to meet someone, is spurring other older women to take up the
challenge. Count me out.
few years ago, my daughter suggested that I go on Match.com. I said that I
would never do that. Then, I got curious. I went to the website and
started looking around. I almost thought to try it and then I decided that
it was definitely not for me. I have been spoiled by having the
opportunity to meet a lot of people through my work. While that has
changed, I do find my life is full in other ways, including having six
life expectancy is slightly over 80, as compared to 68 in 1952. I have
been very interested to learn what these two women have to say about aging
for I, too, am facing the challenge of maintaining good health in my later
week, in an author talk at Sacred
as part of WSHU's "Join the Conversation" series, Quindlen
emphasized the importance of relationships as one ages. She especially
noted the importance of "girl friends" for women. Similarly,
Stewart, in her "10 Golden Rules" for growing old cites
"connecting with others."
other golden rules include: eat well; maintain a healthy weight; stay
physically active; get quality sleep; wear sunscreen; collaborate with a
good primary care doctor regularly; find your passion; stop complaining --
change what you can, and accept what you cannot; and stay curious.
I can do and do. I don't need Match.com.
course, I admit, I do go overboard with her suggestions to "change
what you can, and accept what you can't and to stay curious." My life
reflects lots of change, and maybe this is not necessarily a good thing. I
frequently change where I live and the style of housing I choose. In the
past 30 years, I have lived in three different single-family houses, one
condo, a loft, an apartment in a barn, and a mobile home. What has been
constant is my proximity to the water. I must have Long Island Sound
is a constant in my life. That has been the fuel for my career in
journalism and my food for embracing life as it is.
admit that there have been many times that I have found myself taking up
the "woe is me" mantle. That got me nowhere, especially with my
adult children. They just don't want to hear it. They are constantly
looking for their own coping mechanisms to get them through balancing
full-time work with parenting, along with a mix of Little
soccer and gymnastics while dealing with the responsibilities of aging
brings us full circle to the longevity factor here and the quality of
life. While Stewart, Quindlen and many others, including myself, are
fortunate to have good health -- as Jane
would say, living out our third chapter -- some of our relatives and
friends are not so lucky. Last November my sister-in-law died following a
couple of years of a series of ailments, including osteoporosis. Another
family member is now in a nursing home with Alzheimer's. One of my healthy
friends just lost a friend to a stroke, another is dealing with brain
cancer and another friend's husband has dementia.
past Monday, the Boston
published a cover story with the heading, "Caution: Those Who Care
For Aging Family Members Are Taking On More Medical
Responsibilities." The article focused on the trend today of baby
boomers having to care for aging parents and "shouldering more
complex nursing tasks once performed by professionals in hospitals and
nursing homes." The reason is "reduced funding for home-based
services to help ease the burden and mounting economic pressures to
shorten hospital stays." More than one-half of these family member
caregivers are female with a median age of 56, married and working.
trend underscores the importance in paying attention to those "golden
rules" during the aging process. While some illnesses and chronic
mental and physical health issues may not be avoidable, one can at least
keep up the good fight for our own life and the lives of others depending
© Copyright 2013 Rita Papazian All rights reserved.