It’s wonderful what a hug can do.
A hug can cheer you when you’re blue.
A hug can say, “ I love you so”,
Or, “I really hate to see you go.”
A hug can soothe a small child’s pain, And bring a rainbow after the rain.
Hugs are great for fathers and mothers, Sweet for sisters and brothers;
No need to fret about your store of ‘em;
The more you give, the more there’s more of ‘em.
So stretch those arms without delay
And give that friend a hug today!
“Here comes a Hug”
I am truly blessed each and every day from my elderly friends in the encouragement of “Let’s make the best of this day” as they greet me with a hug. What can Baby Boomers glean from those who are older than us and have gone ahead of us in facing health challenges and the day by day changes of getting older. We don’t work at aging, it just happens. Humility is truly practiced when we come to realize and accept that there are certain things we cannot control.
We Baby Boomers may see some gray hair, our bodies are changing, we may be a little stiffer, or a little forgetful, etc. One thing that can help we Baby Boomers is to understand the aging process. Aging is not a failure of our bodies but it is part of the lifesaving process. In talking to my elderly friends, they tell me that old age is something we should celebrate as they have gone through the cycle and seasons of life. They express a new sense of freedom from life’s expectations and responsibilities as they live and have found deep seeded happiness and fulfillment. This kind of spirit is one that we Baby Boomers can learn from. Here are some suggestions from the older generation to we Baby Boomers that will prepare us to have healthy and happy lives.
- God is not finished with me yet! Don’t “give in” to the old age stereotype. If you enjoy doing something, keep on doing it. My grandmother was 98 years old and she loved to sew. Even though she had health challenges in the assisted living facility she was in, she had her sewing machine by her bed. She would ask her children and grandchildren to pick up clothing materials for her to sew pillow cases for other residents and their families. She made pillow cases for her own family too. I sleep on the pillow cases my grandmother made me when she was 98 years old.
- Practice good health by eating healthy by including fruit and vegetables in your diet. As a Baby Boomer try to stay active as your body will allow such as walking, jogging, bicycling, swimming. I witness on a daily basis, my elderly friends taking walks, swimming, doing light restorative exercise, etc.
- Keep the faith and hope by practicing what my elderly friends call FROG which means F-Fully, R-Rely, O-On, G-God. This is done as individuals as well as in group settings for all faiths and denominations.
- The elderly generation stress to we Baby Boomers to have a hobby. This could include reading, writing, arts and crafts, gardening and flower arranging, etc. A hobby is a wonderful way to be fulfilled and to outreach to folks around you. I personally love to attend craft bazaars where most of the gifts have been meticulously made by elderly hands despite the health challenges. To read a poem or an article on reflections from the past from elderly wisdom is priceless.
- And last but not least, our elderly friends stress for we Baby Boomers to maintain relationships with family and friends. The Greater Generation takes time in working on relationships. I have so many of my older friends take time to write weekly letters to their families and friends rather than e-mailing or texting. As we age the “things of this world grow strangely dim” but compassions and love for others remain strong.
Pinyerd has taught young children in the early childhood classroom for 34 years as well as outreaching to the elderly in intergenerational settings. She has taught and outreached in the schools in Opelika and Baldwin County. She holds a master’s degree in early childhood education as well as a bachelor’s degree in family and child development both from Auburn University. Her husband is the late Carl Pinyerd and she has one son, Gus Pinyerd who has taught her so much about learning. Classroom Observer is here to serve the community in sharing the wonderful teaching programs in our local public schools, private schools, and homeschools. The column is provided to enrich the education of our children, youth, and families. Classroom Observer welcomes educational news, school news, pictures, and events by e-mailing her at firstname.lastname@example.org.