Aging is universal. Whoever you are, it is inevitable that you, your family and friends will be touched by the passage of time. The journey of aging is what inspires us to make every second a memory, as my mother used to say. That reality is also what connects us all. We are all in the same flow. Our communal awareness of this passage inspires us to reach out mindfully to one another.
Threads of kindness and information can be woven into a net of support as we navigate growing older. As America’s over-60 population expands at a faster pace than any other age group, the issues related to that exceptional growth inform the well-being and happiness of seniors and those who assist them.
While aging is inevitable, every transition through the decades is unique. When we began planning this issue, each member of our staff had a story to tell. One had been the primary caregiver for her father as he moved into assisted living, another swaps turns with her sister traveling to and from their mother’s house, hundreds of miles away, to ensure all is well — and laugh over the antics of her cat. Some of us shared what we learned watching our parents care for our grandparents.
The stories involved laughter, tears and insights. What we realized is that caregiving is a stage of life — and that everyone needs the sort of useful and thoughtful information compiled here. Because it’s true: We are all walking each other home.
Publisher, 360 West
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Fort Worth native Ellen Brown says this portrait of her with her mother, Sue Smith, is a favorite. Of walking her mom through her journey with Alzheimers, she says, "There were good and bad days, but through all of them Momma continued to teach me and showed me ways to be her best caregiver. My goal was to honor her life with the best care possible." (Photo courtesy of UNTHSC/Jill Johnson)