A Story that Inspired a Journey
When I was working on my Ph.D. at the University of Toronto, studying retirees age 55 plus who volunteer, I asked my Grandfather about his transition to retirement and how old he was when he retired.
Currently, my Grandfather is 99 years old. He recently moved into a long-term care home.
At the time, he was in his nineties. He was living in a retirement home where he was an active member of his community, helping others with their correspondence, reading to those who were visually impaired and writing the monthly newsletter for the Home.
During our discussion, my Grandfather shared that he never imagined he would live into his nineties.
He retired from GE at age 64. His mom had died at age 64 and his father had died at the age of 75. My Grandfather’s expectations for this stage of life were based on his parents’ experiences, and his own longevity was an unexpected gift. He really did not expect to enjoy a ‘second half of life’.
Those who know him agree that my Grandfather is a wonderful man. My Grandfather’s outlook on life and his contributions to society reflect his open, generous and compassionate spirit; his feeling of being blessed in so many ways; and his joy at just being here at this incredible age. He has enjoyed an extra 30 plus years of life.
My Grandfather is the inspiration for my work. He is my role model for positive, healthy aging.
This website is about the gift of longevity, the journey during the second half of life and the opportunity it represents for all of us to be aware of what we do with the time we have on this earth. As a gerontologist, adult educator and advocate for positive, healthy aging, I will highlight and discuss important issues within the growing field of aging, comment on innovations in positive, healthy aging and share the stories of individuals in the second half of life who are contributing through meaningful work and doing amazing things in their community.
Welcome to my website. Enjoy and please visit again soon!