Stubborn or Obsessed

badgeIn my heart of hearts, I knew that putting that WordPress Postaday 2014 badge in the corner of my page was a mistake.  At the time, my life was in an ebb and I had time to spare.  But by the sometimes fine age of 69, I knew … the ebbs never last.  Life is always in session, sometimes leisurely sometimes not.  For at least three weeks now, my days have been over-filled with new business, taxes, travel planning and a variety of activities.  I’m rebuilding a computer for a friend of my son’s.  I’m the literature guy for my Thursday Night Men’s Meeting.  I am one busy old guy.  Quality problems, my friend Truck would tell me and he’d be right.  Nonetheless, it’s hard to keep up with that damn badge.  Of course, it’s not the badge … it can easily be deleted with a trip to my WordPress Dashboard.  It’s me.  I’m either Stubborn or Obsessed when it comes to Older Eyes – Bud’s Blog, so I’m trying to keep up.  When I overdo like this, something always falls by the wayside.  For a month, it’s been the form of journaling that Julia Cameron calls Morning Pages in The Artist’s Way.  It has been an important part my life for over twenty years, a way to center myself at the start of each day.   Yesterday, during my weekly meeting with my sponsor, he told me that in his opinion, I should get back to doing it.  Shit.  But he’s right.  I’ll try.  So you may see a few posts like yesterday’s for a while, photo essays.  In case you missed it, the subject was Blue and it included several photos, a Van Gogh painting and several songs on the theme.  I may do colors on Wednesdays for a while.  Then maybe we’ll start flavors.  But for now, the badge stays.

I Googled Stubborn or Obsessed in hopes of finding out which I am.  Instead, I found an article on caring.com titled Demystifying Your Aging Parents’ New Stage of Life.  In it Connie Matthiessen says, Those of us who are caring for elderly parents are often bewildered by the decisions they make — and by their seemingly stubborn refusal to follow our advice. We shake our heads over their obsession with the past.  Hmm.  How about their obsession with a blog, Connie?  It is actually a good article on the developmental stages that we seniors go through.  I checked out the author’s bio and discovered that her parents are in their eighties, so I’d guess she’s pushing sixty, at least, so I’m sure she’s looking down the road with some trepidation.  As parents, Muri and I continually consulted books explaining the developmental stages of our children.  It perhaps helped us see that our children weren’t the only ones who could be little monsters on occasion, but I’m not sure it did much for our communication with them.  I wish we’d listened better and viewed them as individuals who were more than merely extensions of us.  A gift of the 12-Step meetings I attend has been sitting in a room with men older than I, listening on a weekly basis to their stories, their joys and their sorrows … and what they’ve done to navigate through them.  I had a sponsor ten years older than I for 20 years … I used to tell him, You’re my scout into the future.  He’d answer, It’s not a pretty picture, is it?  Half facetious, half not.  If it helps you deal with your parents to understand them developmentally, read Connie Matthiessen’s article.  But the very point of Older Eyes – Bud’s Blog is that Reflections from an Older Perspective can’t make you understand what it’s like to be 69 but my experiences as a 69 year old man can help you relate.  In my (not so) humble opinion, if you want to communicate better with your parents, slow down and listen.  Be compassionate but don’t treat them like children.  An article in the UK’s Daily Mail says that a study at Yale University has shown that talking to old people like children cuts eight years off their lives.  And besides, when you are their age, you’ll really hate it, I promise you.

 

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4 Comments on “Stubborn or Obsessed”

  1. Wendy Says:

    Bud, thoughtful post here. I have writing friends who are in their early 80’s ( I am younger than that) and they often comment on this patronizing manner of speech that they experience, not only from their children, but everywhere else. Where does the idea come from that because people are over, hum 75?, they are becoming children? While they may walk slower, or talk slower the average aging person is simply older, nothing else. Btw, you are not stubborn or obsessed. You are diligent! ANd that is a positive attribute for any age person to have. Cheers!

    • oldereyes Says:

      I’ve always been inclined to believe to be good at something … or even do something difficult … you have to be somewhat stubborn or obsessed. When the something is viewed positively by society, we call it disciplined or diligent.

  2. Rick Gleason Says:

    I bogged everyday for an entire month (September 2012). I called the challenge a “Month of Blogging Dangerously.” It was one of the hardest things I’ve tried to do. I did it, but it will be sometime before I attempt to do it again, if I ever do.

    Your tenacity over the many months I’ve followed you is impressive indeed Bud. It’s good to know each and every day you’ll be there, and one can always count on an insightful read. But I woudn’t blame you in the least if you took a break.

    All the best, and thank you.

    • oldereyes Says:

      Thank you, Rick. There have been days I’ve said, “Why the heck do I bother?” But looking back, it’s very (self) educational. I learn a lot about myself, what I think and believe and about the subjects I post about. Keeps the old brain ticking, too.


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