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Older Workers? Check Out Bernice and Harold

Posted Jul 26 2008 10:18am

Having a difficult day? Wondering what the work week or even retirement might bring?

Generational issues and the "aging workplace" are hot topics.Totally  Consumed, Business Pundit,andAge Curve Blogare each talking about it this week.

When it comes toolderworkers, there seem to be at least two questions we struggle with:

a. What are the capabilities of those people we're callingolderworkers?

b. What am I going to want to do or be able to do whenIreach theoldercategory?

I think the answer is:

Follow Bernice and Harold



Bernice

I didn't know Bernice until I read her obituary. Take a look and see how it speaks to you.

. . .She was a world traveler, visiting Europe several times, once having the opportunity to visit the Crown Prince of Lichtenstein. She was able to engage in several unusual activities after the age of 85. In Florida her son in law took her for a ride on his motorcycle; in California she flew in a hot air balloon and enjoyed hang gliding over the pacific coastline. On a trip to Alaska, she flew in a helicopter to the top of a glacier and also participated in an exciting white water rafting experience. (Bernice) was a life long member of the Episcopal Church of the Ascension where she had been a Sunday School Teacher and member of the Choir and Altar Guild. She was very active in the OES for over 80 years and contributed countless volunteer hours for the Red Cross. She was well known as a maker of numerous braided rugs, completing two additional ones last spring, in her 100th year. She made many new friends in recent years at (The) Manor where she continued enjoying craft work. . .

Harold

I do know Harold. He's my father. He managed to survive D-Day physically unscathed.  Sixty-two years later he had a leg removed as a result of diabetes and related circulatory problems.

What did he do?

He went to physical therapy 5 days a week; mastered the use of an artificial limb; and, during lunch hour, fed those around him whose ailments made it impossible to feed themselves. Harold said it gave him a sense of worth to help people whoweren't as fortunateas he. Some of his high school friends recetently took him to a 68-year reunion luncheon. His description: "It was terrific to be with my buddies--the girls and the guys--and laugh together again."

The "girls and the guys." I think that's the key phrase. Bernice and Harold both decided tolive lifeas a "girl" and a "guy" instead of caricatures from a marketing demographic.

Let's decide to do the same!

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