Notes from a 21 year old caregiver: The beauty of inter-generational lifestyles

Studies show, time and time again, that there is a strong benefit to bringing our seniors and youth together!

Schools like Case Western Reserve, New York University, and The Art Institute of Chicago actually have shared housing options for students to live with seniors of different abilities, rent free!

So, why does our culture still struggle with feeling uncomfortable around our elders? One could argue that they are the ones that hold the wisdom and secrets to life.

Let me serve as living proof that true and enriching fulfillment in life can be found in the time spent with our elders.

“My best friend is 78 years old, and struggles with dementia more and more everyday. I met her just a few years ago, and can no longer picture a life without her. Although some times are tough, each good moment can outweigh thousands of bad ones in an instant. She has taught me so much about life, happiness, and peace. Together, we celebrate the good times, and grieve the bad ones. There are ways to enrich the relationship between a care provider and his/her patient. If you want my advice, start by doing just that; build a relationship. The rest won’t necessarily come easy, but it will in fact come. The happy moments will be much happier, and the sad much stronger. Nonetheless, the humanity will remain. We both are journeying life together as people. I keep myself grounded by remembering that. Some friends in our life just need a bit more help, and that is all.” 

 

Take time to listen and learn from those around you; old or young, big or small. People need people to be happy, and people need people grow.

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