Aging

Aging Wisely

We all have something in common. We’re getting older.

While this fact might delight children who can’t wait to be “grown-ups,” it is often a source of angst for those of us who have already “grown up.” There are approximately 76 million baby boomers in the United States, and their ages range from the early fifties to the early seventies.

It’s not surprising that this demographic is often bombarded by the media with anti-aging everything: skin creams for every part of our bodies, miracle “cures” for our wrinkles, youthful colors for our hair. They all promise to make us look younger -- to fix us. Botox and facelifts have become the norm for many people (men and women), and again, there is cosmetic surgery available for almost every part of our bodies.
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Aging

Are Middle Age Moments Inevitable?

These words are being typed in the waiting room of my local Meineke while I am waiting for necessary repairs on my 9-year-old Jeep Patriot. Purchased for cash back in 2011, after my mother left me an inheritance, I have taken good care of my vehicle which has taken me to Canada twice, to local destinations, to my various offices where I have seen clients, and on recreational journeys. My son keeps asking me why I don’t trade it in for an environmentally friendlier hybrid or electric car. He knows what a tree hugger his mother is and I tell him that I like not having a car payment and I want to maintain and sustain this one for as long as possible.
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Aging

Over the Hill with Bipolar Disorder: How I Lived to Tell the Tale

I’ll be 67-years-old next August 7. I think I’m still 17 until I look in the mirror each morning, splash cold water on my face, brush my gray hair and discover more wrinkles on my face that were not there the day before.

My psychiatrist did not tell me what to expect in recovery when he diagnosed me with bipolar disorder II nearly 25 years ago. I thought that if I just took the medication all would be well. I didn’t know about maintaining a healthy sleep schedule, how to manage stress, eating balanced meals, exercise and psychotherapy to start living as normal a life as possible.
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Aging

Living with an Aging Parent

My mother is 85, and she still drives and lives alone.

When people see her they say “she never changes.” She took care of me when I went through two bouts of cancer, one in 2012 and the other in 2016. In short, Mom is in excellent shape for her age.

But lately, she’s been moving a bit slower and seeming more like the octogenarian that she is.
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Addiction

Psychology Around the Net: April 29, 2017


Happy Saturday, sweet readers!

Regardless of which day you read this, chances are I'm trying (or have succeeded for that day) to get some exercise in. I made an appointment with my doctor last week to find out why I've been so, so exhausted lately. Any mental health concerns were ruled out, and my blood test results were top notch (as usual -- go me!). So, she asked me about my exercise routine and, well...let's just say my answer wasn't what she wanted to hear.

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Aging

These 5 ‘Powers’ Can Boost Your Golden Years


After a lifetime of hard work, millions of baby boomers are retiring in record numbers across the globe. Like any life transition, embarking on the transition from working life to retirement can be wrought with challenges and stressors, especially for those forced into retirement. Yet, it also opens a window of opportunity to take a few simple steps to secure a healthy and happy retirement.

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Aging

Peeling Off the Pericardium

On June 12, 2014, my life changed immeasurably with an unexpected cardiac event. It had been brewing for a while and reached a boiling point with a fully occluded artery sending me careening into a new way of living and loving. A few hours after the initial symptoms, I had a new body part (a stent) keeping it open and the blood flowing.

How many beats per minute? How much love can the heart hold? How do we keep the blood pumping that sustains our lives? How do we become works of he(art)? Each of these is a practical and philosophical question I ponder.
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Aging

Caregivers: Remember to Care for Yourself

According to the Alzheimer's Association, more than 5 million Americans currently have dementia, with Alzheimer’s dementia being the most common. Over 5 million caregivers are unpaid and devote countless hours to caregiving every year. All this while working and taking care of their own families. In fact, many caregivers are forced to take on a second job in order to help cover their loved ones expenses incurred by their illness of dementia. As one can imagine, over time, the stress of caregiving begins to take a toll, both financially and emotionally, and caregivers’ health begins to suffer.
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Aging

One Year Later. Mom’s Still Dead.

Grief. It's a funny thing. I don't understand it and I don't want to, I just wish it would go away. One year and a half later and I still find myself crying mid-day because I can't call my Mom to remind me that everything is going to be okay. Sure, the impact of losing her has changed -- the first year I spent many nights dreaming about her, re-living the events leading up to her death, and wishing that I would awaken and somehow she would be there, here, with me. I cried and prayed that I would awaken and find out that this was all unreal, that she somehow miraculously came back to life! That she is still here, still alive, and still with me. Day after day, I waited, hoped, listened, for her return. Wishful thinking...and emotional exhaustion is all that I have been left with.
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Aging

Video: Medical Conditions That Can Cause Psychiatric Symptoms

It seems like common sense that psychological problems require psychological solutions. If anxiety is interfering in your life, then surely the appropriate treatment is psychotherapy or anxiety medication, right?

In reality, though, other medical conditions can sometimes masquerade as psychiatric conditions. Hyperthyroidism can cause anxiety, and vitamin B-12 deficiency can cause paranoia, to give only two examples.
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Aging

Psychology Around the Net: December 24, 2016


Happy Saturday, sweet readers!

I celebrate Christmas, which means today -- Christmas Eve -- I'm surrounded by friends and family and fortunately an extremely low number of gifts (our families decided to focus on the children this year, much to my delight). Over the years, I've become more and more aware of -- and sad to the point of sobbing about -- how our society has turned Christmas into a gluttonous commercial nightmare. To me, the holidays aren't...
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