Diary of Lisa Taylor, reluctantly 42 (and a half)

Or.. 'f.ck me I'm forty.. two.. and a half', though can look 38 on a - not so deluded - good day. Or 'How to reconcile a well experienced mind trapped in a still - but for how long? – youthful body.' Don't have the 30somethings angst/problems, neither have the resigned (?) ageing baby-boomers in safe family territory outlook yet. Here's how I cope, one day all sexy women will get old... but never invisible. © Lisa Taylor 2005/6/7/8/9. Jeez.. so much for the 42 and-a-half delusion

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

24 May - the old people's homes view

An old friend in mid fifties writes and amongst other things says that she's finally managed to shake off the the thing about conditioning to get goals that we all get brainwashed into and so is beginning to enjoy life w/o feeling like a loser for having not achieved this and that.

Praise unconventional views and behavious is what I say. If only.

I have an unconventional views re the care of elderly which I think we westerners should re-locate to places like india or thailand or where it would be cheap. Whenever I express somethign along these lines, having thught about it and not understanding why we have to sell what the old people managed to accumulate in life and what we have in order to front thousands of pounds in nursing homes etc, people think I'm being selfish and heartless. But hear me out.

If we're taking the old person away from his /her home anyway, and the old person is by that point not terribly mobile and if the other guests/inmates whatever you want to call them , are also from the same broadl speaking neck of the woods, why does it make it any different if the home is in the outskirts of their original town or across the UK or near a hill station in India? Have you been to a hill station in India? It looks like the Cotswolds, sort of.

The people I shock with this view tell me 'oh but they'll die in India in the heat' . No they won't, they'll be in their airconditioned home and in fact have a better time if they can walk out when the seasons are sunny. 'They'll find the fact they're with foreigners bewildering' . No they won't, name me an older person in your family now who doesn't have a foreign carer? They fall silent thinking about the Easter European, Philipino, African, Caribbean carers they deal with. Most (though not all) of these foreign carers have nothing in common with (culturally or educationally) with the patients and what matters then is only that care should be administered with humanity. But do you, age 79 need to talk about Tolstoy with person spooning you food or washing your bottom? it's too late for all that. Ask a 79 year old.

As for interaction, if they're well/functioning/sentient enough to watch TV/read a book they'll watch Sky /local product they know, if they're gaga, well they're gaga and it doesn't matter if it's Thai song and dance. 'What about not being able to visit?' say my questioners. Again, if they're sentient, let's set them up with Skype, if they don't know who you are due to dementia then you walking into the room instead of another local volunteer /visitor makes no change whatsoever. Of course you want to see them, so make the trip once in a while, using the money you have retained from their property/your property, instead of spending £2k plus a month in care in the UK. But if you try and separate the religious/cultural conditioning you have endured from the reality, you'll find that my solution is not a bad one.

I don't want my parents cash but neither do I think it' s a great use of it to see it used pretty fast and furiously by average homecare or nice home care. I'd rather they were comfortable somewhere cheaper and use the rest for the living, children, grandchildren, other children.

People think I'm a monster when I propose this, I can tell by the silence. I end up saying 'look by the time it's our turn we may be sent to underground colonies for geriatrics on Mars. Get over it.'




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