When I share publicly my love for old people or tell people that I go to the nursing home for pure enjoyment, the responses I normally get in return ranges. Most people don’t understand, nor do they really want to understand, because the majority of individuals see the elderly as near to death, “useless” to our society, and a burden. As I look back on all the hours and days I’ve spent visiting the elderly in nursing homes or assisted living, the phrase, “Wisdom comes with age” comes to mind. This wisdom has touched my heart in an incredible way.
America can be oblivious when it comes to the wisdom of older generations. Society tells us what to think, what to believe. If you want the truth, old people have it. They have experienced more than our generation has by almost a lifetime. The elderly today have faced so much of what today we only read in history a textbook, which makes them unique and valuable to our society. I often think on how much wisdom old people could pass on to us if only we were openhearted to receive it. We could learn so much through communicating with the elderly; Old people are truly the world’s best teachers and the best experts on life.
As a 20 year-old college student, I find that many of the elderly I interact with have many of the same viewpoints and concepts as myself. They’ve experienced so many adventures, memories, and love that I can only hope to experience myself one day. They have survived the craziest of times. Some have eve gone through 2 World Wars. They’ve gone through adversity and can point to us the good out of every major struggle. They appreciate the little things in life, unlike this materialistic ever-consuming world. Their souls are irreplaceable and their outlook on life should continue on through us. Old people know how to survive in this cruel world. They can offer the best advice when facing troubles and hardship.
The way I see it is that sometimes those who have little have the most to give. Old people may not have the world’s acceptance, but they have the greatest wisdom to give. Ultimately, the ideas and values I’ve learned from old people are something I couldn’t have gained anywhere else. The elderly have touched my life in so many ways and raising awareness for old people has really become by my passion. I have grown as a person, emotionally, mentally and even physically, when I gain perspective on other peoples stories who have had it tougher than I have and have lived to tell the tale. The more I visit nursing homes and interact with the people living there the more the more I learn that wisdom really does come with age. We can change the world together and how the world views the older generation as a whole through sharing their wisdom. We too will grow old. As I continue to share some of the stories I have had the privilege of hearing from those who will leave us soon, I can only hope to retain the wisdom and valuable lessons that have been entrusted to me. But besides learning from them, mu greatest hope is that society once again learns to value those in society that are most vulnerable for often those that have less truly can give more.
Shared by: Claire Sims from Texas
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