Category

Death/Dying

Not grim and not somber, this category wades into matters of death and dying with some observations about the big picture and details that sometimes don’t see the light of day!  Full of years, readers and viewers will find this category a good place to begin conversations and redeem what might otherwise seem to be an easily avoided part of life.

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The end is near II

The entries for yesterday and today look at the idea of “endings”, and how we might react to that idea as it plays out in our lives. Today: How endings effect my spirit. As I move through my seventh decade of life I’m more and more intrigued how ending-ideas worm their way into my thoughts. The current seasons of the calendar and liturgical years nudge me to make sense of these matters. Not justMORE...

The end is near I

The entries for today and tomorrow look at the concept of “endings”, and how we might react to that idea as it plays out in our lives. Today: Some concept exploration…. The title above, evocative of scores of cartoons, is also familiar emotional territory for older adults. Endings of any kind may seem to gather like lifespan sentries, silently watching as we move toward conclusive events andMORE...

Your lifework

  If you’ve followed this blog series for awhile, you’ve seen my frequent use of the term, “lifework.” It’s an important concept to me, with roots and tendrils that extend into my sense of self. Dictionary definitions suggest connections to the scope of one’s life, and the work that is accomplished during its duration. Knowing your lifework requires a broad perspective about your essentialMORE...

Between ability and fragility

Eventually all of us will cross the line between physical/mental capability and fragility. During this part of life’s journey, the demarcation point might be broad and relatively invisible—a gradual deterioration of strength or the gradual redevelopment of cancer. This boundary could also be thin but highly visible—a stroke or broken hip. In either case, we will reckon with the transition, makingMORE...

Exit interviews?

Along my career path, I’ve participated in several exit interviews—final conversations with my bosses about any number of matters regarding my past and future work. With my supervisor, I could review the final details of my separation; learn important information that might be useful for the next steps in my life and receive affirmations about my past service along with best wishes for my futureMORE...

Who’s in charge? (Redux)

Previously I shared some thoughts about describing responsibilities as caregivers anticipate the needs of their frail elderly parents. In this entry, I approach the same question, this time from the viewpoint of an older adult who wants to invite adult children—or other caregivers—into a beginning conversation about my possible needs. The following personal observations and experiences come toMORE...

Who’s in charge?

As you anticipate caring for a frail elderly person—or seeking care yourself—it may be wise to ask (and answer) the simple question, “Who will be in charge?” It makes sense to address this matter as part of elder care conversations now. Events in my life over the past two decades have sharpened that question and broadened possible answers. Consider this invitation to join in a two-partMORE...

Reflections from a funeral, Part 2

  Recently I learned to appreciate the value that can come to those who attend a memorial service in a funeral home. My observations from the previous entry continue here. • Because those in attendance knew each other—and the person who died—this event felt like a final step in knowing more fully who she really was. A satisfying experience to complete all the years of positive andMORE...

Reflections from a funeral, Part 1

  Recently I attended a memorial service that took place in a funeral home. Because this was something I’ve not experienced in decades, I was especially interested in seeing how this kind of service might compare with a memorial service in a church. I was favorably impressed at how spiritual matters maintained their strengths in the funeral home setting. In this and the following entry, IMORE...

When it’s time to give up

I’ve watched this feeling grow in some older adults who I have known well: They finally get tired of the work of staying alive, and just give up. What I have also seen: the difficulty of bringing up this matter with those around them. How do any of us tell those who love us that we’re ready to die? What words do we use? What will our loved ones be ready to hear? How do we broach the subjectMORE...

Bob Sitze

BOB SITZE has filled the many years of his lifework in diverse settings around the United States. His calling has included careers as a teacher/principal, church musician, writer/author, denominational executive staff member and meat worker. Bob lives in Wheaton, IL.

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