I want to wish a belated Happy Anniversary to Terry’s parents, Pete and Bess Weber, who celebrated their 58th wedding anniversary yesterday. Here’s hoping you have many, many more together.
My in-laws are very healthy, active senior citizens who are always busy. Apparently walking four miles a day, being involved in his church, helping his daughters with home improvement projects, and doing small repairs for the neighbors wasn’t enough to keep him busy, so at 79 years old Pete got a job as a Wal-Mart greeter! Bess is always finding a new recipe, working with her genealogy projects, taking part in church activities, and a hundred and one other things that fill her days. They’re just too darned busy to get old!
Unfortunately, as our generation’s parents age, not every family is as blessed as Terry’s. Diminished physical or mental capacity can impact every member of the family. Last night ABC aired a Primetime special on aging parents that showed some of the problems that come up.
Sometimes the fulltime RV lifestyle can be an asset to a family with aging parents, and other times it adds to the problems. We know several RVers who return to their hometowns to give other family members who are caregivers a respite, sometimes staying for several weeks at a time.
We have also known RVers who take elderly parents on the road with them for short trips, and even one or two who travel fulltime with an elderly parent. Just last week our friends Richard and Patsy King stopped at Elkhart Campground with Richard’s 91 year old mother, Dorothy, who is still as sharp as a tack and absolutely beautiful. They had been showing Dorothy the sites around Ohio’s Amish country and then Indiana before taking her back to their hometown of Victoria, Texas.
Some RVers we know have had to get off the road to care for parents whose health is failing, either because other family members refuse to do so, or because there is nobody else to take on the responsibility. One lady told me that she loves her father, but she felt guilty because she also resented having to give up the lifestyle she had dreamed of for years to care for him. I told her not to beat herself up, that her feelings were only natural. But I secretly thanked my lucky stars that my in-laws are so healthy, and that Terry and I are able to continue enjoying the freedom of life on the road.
Thought For The Day – A bartender is just a pharmacist with a limited inventory.