Being Older

2006-12-09-23.47.23
Dear God,

Thank you for letting me spend time with people who are considerably older than me. I have enjoyed some of their perspectives on life and family. I’ve heard the stories – sometimes over and over – about the good times and the times that weren’t so good. I’ve seen old black and white photos of family members and acquaintances who have names that have been long forgotten. I’ve heard of places and events that may only exist in the minds of those telling their stories. I’ve had glimpses of how things were done and how people thought about things many, many decades ago.

These kind people tend to run at different clock-speeds than me so I’ve had to learn to adjust my speed in order to more fully understand what is being said or discussed. I have had to learn and develop my patience, understanding, listening skills, and tolerance to be with these sweet people. I, perhaps, had not had these qualities until you introduced me to these dear people. Thank you.

I pray that these older friends can find some dignity and distinction in their waning years. As their physical systems fail, I understand how they are compelled to over-compensate in other ways to make up for their inabilities. It hurts to watch but I also admire their spirit to live and their desire to be independent. I suppose, God, you have given every one of us a will to live and be free, yes? Thank you for that wiring. It is amazing to watch how hard some of these dear old people work to survive and be well. I also see and sense their frustration, too, sometimes when they can’t be as they would like to be. Sadly, sometimes they aren’t even aware of what is happening to and in them.

God, give these kind people strength for as long as you will. And when it is time for them to be taken home, I pray that they can depart with a sense of peace in their minds and souls. And I pray for me and their caregivers, families, and friends, too. Give us a special dose of patience and understanding when spending time with these special people. May we be bearers of some joy, happiness, and comfort to these in their closing years. I’m glad that some of us can give a listen, offer a hug, or hold a hand.

In our care of them, we are blessed, too. Thank you.

Amen.

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