When we recognize that we don’t have all the time in the world, we see our priorities most clearly. ~ Laura Carstensen ~
I’ve been away from the keyboard for over a week because I’ve been away in Panama again. Dusty and I traveled there to help out another friend who was going through a difficult time with the care of her aging mother. Mama is 89 soon 90 and was being cared for at home by two full-time caregivers when the situation collapsed.
It’s been my observation lately, watching some of my friends deal with elderly parents that at some time in our lives, if we’re fortunate that our parents live to ripe old age, that our roles get reversed; the child becomes the parent, the parent becomes the child. So is the cycle of life. Mama’s situation is looked after, she still a feisty woman for her age and now she’s getting the type of care and companionship that she needs and seems very happy.
Today’s Ted Talk is by Laura Carstensen who is the founding director of the Stanford Center on Longevity. The center supports the research of scientists and other professionals intended at improving the lives of older people. Carstensen is best known for research that discredited labels of the old as slow and surly. With her students and colleagues, she has published well over 100 articles on life-span development. Her studies show that as we age we are not as nimble on our feet and our memories aren’t as sharp, but we get happier as we get older.
As our society ages and we live longer we hope that our quality of life can stay good. Dr. Carstensen’s research shows that as people get older they become happier, more content, and have a more positive outlook on the world.