Visiting Angels - February 2020

February 2020

5274 Scotts Valley Dr., #102 Scotts Valley, CA 95066 831-430-0616 www.VisitingAngels.com/CentralCoast 229 Reindollar Ave., Suite E Marina, CA 93933 831-392-0876

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Life as We Know It How Age Turns Uncertainty Into Opportunity

B ack when the phone company was still called Mountain Bell, my grandmother worked as an operator on the night shift. She had that job for 40 years, and if it had been up to her, Grandma would have done it for her entire life. However, when she turned 65, my grandmother faced a major health issue. A pinched nerve in her back caused her serious pain. It hurt to walk, stand, and even hold the big phone book she used for her job. Suddenly, her future was uncertain. My grandmother told me how scared she was that life as she knew it was going to end. Life as she knew it did end, but it wasn’t the end of my grandmother’s life. In fact, her life changed for the better! Yes, she had to quit her job of 40 years, but soon, she healed enough to do all the things she hadn’t been able to do when she was working full time. My grandmother started gardening again, traveled more, and remodeled her house, which was something she’d wanted to do for years. She even got remarried! What my grandmother thought was loss was actually new opportunities. Over the years, I have spoken with many seniors who share my grandmother’s fears. The future is always uncertain, but when you get older and suddenly have to face losing your longtime job, battling chronic illness, or being unable to walk as easily as you once could, then that uncertainty starts to look like unhappiness. But from what I’ve seen, getting older has so many more things to look forward to than to be worried about. When my grandmother quit her job, she was able to turn around and live the life she really wanted to live. That’s because she knew exactly what she wanted out of life. This is

a benefit that comes with age. I recently

read a wonderful article from “Good Housekeeping” that listed quotes

from remarkable seniors about the joys of growing older. From actress Sally Field to

former-First Lady Michelle Obama, these quotes covered the value of compassion, confidence, and freedom. One of my favorite quotes came from Jo Ann Jenkins, CEO of AARP: “I don’t want to be 30 again — do you? Sure, I may sometimes think I’d like to look like I’m 30 and feel like I’m 30, but I’ve benefited immensely from the experience and wisdom these years have brought me, and I wouldn’t trade them for anything.” With age comes wisdom. Some people claim we get too old to put that wisdom to good use, but I disagree. When we have the wisdom to know what we want and the self-assurance to go after it, there’s no such thing as “too old.” My grandmother taught me this, and it’s something I’ve seen many of our seniors realize themselves. If you ever find yourself thinking that life as you know it will change forever, know that it almost certainly will. But with these changes comes the opportunity for a more fulfilling life. Embrace it!

Cindy Saunders, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

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