Here’s the category that holds together some disparate elements of life in one’s later years. Problems and their resolutions, pain and its consequences–but also the down-to-earth pleasures that can grace the days of an older person. Pleasure and pain may exist side-by-side, here and in life!


Full of (past) years

  One of my end-of-years practices is to find quiet time during the holidays for the purpose of reviewing the year(s) past, and for looking ahead to the coming year. (My future-imagining is dependent on joy- and gratitude-filled recollections of the past.) It’s one of the life rituals that I cherish highly. The lengthening string of my years stretches past easy recollection. As I siftMORE...

Locker room talk

  Okay, guys, listen up. There’s something we older men should talk about. Something we should be doing Yes, I’m talking about exercising regularly at our age. Let me remind you how this works. If we don’t exercise, our bodies and brains head south. (Ever heard of “use it or lose it”?) With too much weight, too little flexibility, balance or aerobics, we may be cutting years off our livesMORE...

What’s still working?

This blog is part of an ongoing series that answers an intriguing question: What might it mean for older adults to claim that they are still “fearfully and wonderfully made?” It’s fairly easy to look at your body—and brain—and see what’s NOT working so well. (If you need help there, just turn on the TV and watch commercials that can inform you about infirmities that you didn’t know existed.) WithMORE...

Living fully when it’s difficult just to live

  Sometimes I hear this voice inside my head: “It’s easy for you to be positive about this aging thing, Bob. You’re not neck-deep in troubles!” The voice may be right—“living fully” could feel like empty-headed, Pollyanna-ish puffery if someone’s physical, emotional, financial or relational conditions aren’t all that good. I should probably listen to that voice, too. If I bent my ear in thatMORE...

You’re doing the best you can

  A word of grace for those of you who care for an elderly person: You probably have less reason to feel guilty about your level of care than you might imagine. To say that another way: You’re probably doing the best you can with the resources, energy and capabilities that are available to you. Caring for an older neighbor, friend or family member is perhaps the most complicated andMORE...

Pay now or pay later

“You reap what you sow”—is a lifestyle axiom that exists in almost all religious traditions. At this time of life, we’re “paying later”—dealing with the consequences of actions or inactions that took place long ago. It’s a tough part of being older, an expected phenomenon that’s still irksome. (Some examples: We didn’t floss when we were younger, and now the endodontist is our new best friendMORE...

Invalid invalid

The title for this entry isn’t a typo. Actually, you’re reading two different words that have a strong connection for those of us who are older. If you’re an invalid, you’re likely confined to quarters, in your own home or in a care-giving arrangement. You’re limited in the range of your movements. “Invalid” can also carry negative freight: Not only is an invalid afflicted with chronic illness orMORE...

Old and silly

Here’s a personal question: Has anyone ever told you that it’s good when you’re silly? If YES, you’re likely surrounded by people who understand the original meanings of this term in Old English, Norse and German: blessed, happy, prosperous, blissful, of good mood or kindhearted. In those earlier versions of personified hilarity (joyfulness), being silly was a mark of good character. A sillyMORE...


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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