November 18, 2017

New Baby vs New Elder

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A bit of a rant today:

It’s getting to be years ago that I was looking at bookshelves filled with books on having a baby, bringing a baby home, what to do with a baby when it’s home, what to expect next; what it’s expressing and when, how-to this and that. Then the parents, and what they are going through and how they can handle it. I still see that bookshelf at bookstores, how could I not? It’s one of the bigger shelves in the store.

But I go now in search of a different book. It’s the one on bringing an elder into my world, not a baby. Forget finding it on a bookshelf. I have to go to Amazon. Why? There are so few books written on this topic. If I help a parent move closer to me or maybe into my home, there’s no psychologist there to hold my hand and guide me along the way. There’s no medical book like the pediatric ones that tell you no honey until age 1. There’s no book telling me how to make my parent’s new home “elder-safe.” There’s no info on how to prepare for the transition and how to make the move itself.

The beginning of life has as many concerns and hurdles as does the end of life. One just seems to us as a bit more optimistic and less fearful. This is a call out to authors and professionals to start writing these books. The market will be there when your book arrives. Occupational therapists – you know the whole world of concerns of what ailment needs what environment to have a person comfortable and successful in their daily routines. Psychologists – tell me how I’m going to decompress when things get rough; how can I love my parent when it gets hard? Builders – tell me what I need to have in their new home. And doctors – tell me how to find a new range of specialists in the new neighborhood; tell me how to have a smooth transition from one practitioner to another.

For you authors who take this on: one of you will write “the” book on this topic. One of you will be on Larry King. One of you will make this bringing of an elder into our lives something we can do without all the fumbling. I look forward to your success.

PS: A video clip about planning your own 70’s:
Living Large In The 70’s

Konrad Kaletsch
Universal Design Resource
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