Murray and Carol's adult 'kids' in 2008, for whose benefit we hope to age wisely and well.
As we age the temptation is to assume everything we've learned or experienced will be of interest or value to the next generation. It's not necessarily so.
Wisdom in aging is to discern between those things that are of interest or value to the next generation and those things we'd simply like to share.
Carol and I shared a meal with long-time friends in which we discussed the challenges of our aging parents and what we wanted to learn from the experience as we face our own aging process.
I suggested we write those things, seal the envelope, and open it when we reach 70 to remind ourselves.
On the way home we composed this list for that (now public) 'time capsule'...
When we reach 70, let's
ask for their stories rather than telling ours
remember the point, don't multiply details
keep description of ailments to the minimum
invite others opinions on current events
listen more than talk
speak hope and encouragement
ask "can I help?" (but don't insist)
don't stay too long
ask "how can I pray?"
don't repeat ourselves (stories, perspectives, experiences)
Let us know how we do ...
Here are some thoughts on the challenges the elderly face in having the next generation understand them...