I found this letter in The Guardian this morning and was so impressed by it that I knew at once that I had to use it the basis of a blog. It was written by a lady called Margaret Spivey who says she ‘is 89 ( a mere year younger than I am ) lives alone, and doesn’t have dementia’ and it was inspired by a previous correspondence, and especially by a letter from a man called David Head.
‘Mr Head’s words about older people “no longer finding much pleasure in the things they used to enjoy” worried me.’ she writes, ‘We need to find new things to enjoy.’ and she goes on to write about her own experience. ”It has depressed me how many people were surprised that I watched Euro 2020. Why? I’ve discovered how to record early-morning gems such as operas from Sydney Harbour, and tomorrow I’m starting lessons on how to use my late husband’s iPad.
When I can no longer get out unaided, this is the kind of help I hope for: friends who’ll pick up bright new things for me to wear from the charity shops, make sure that when the rugby starts I have a bottle of San Mig and a bag of crisps every weekend, tell me about new books they’ve read (and lend them to me), and ask about my adventures (I’ve caught a fish from the African Queen and seen Mount Everest).
Mr Head’s final words sum it up well: don’t treat old people as wallpaper. We’ve learned a lot the hard way, and the most important lesson of all is that life is for living. I thank God for it every day.
My sentiments exactly Margaret. Strength to your 89 year old elbow!