These postings have been going on now for two years and there have been nearly 80 of them. We started off with a sort of ABC of medical problems connected to ageing and then moved off in several different directions. I wrote more personally sometimes than may have been helpful, but I am often writing about things from first hand experience and I wanted to deal with real issues, emotional, medical and social. In the process I have learned quite a lot and there have been useful comments from readers, some of which I have tried to follow up. It has all been very English-based and I apologise to Spanish readers for references that may not have made much sense, and yet there have been as many comments from them as from English readers.
All the time I have tried to hold a balance between the ‘I am as young as I feel’ attitude of many older people as they rightly insist on being positive about their age, and the scientific perspective which recognises the physical reality of ageing.
But I have been sceptical of the frantic anti-ageing approach of some people (encouraged by the cosmetic industry) which pretends that nothing is happening to our bodies and therefore to our mental capacity. It is a fact that as soon as we are born, we begin to age – and that accelerates as we come to the later years of our lives. The challenge is, how can we adjust to the rather different person we have become as that process happens?
There hasn’t been much original in what I have written, and much of it has been borrowed from news items, articles and the internet. We who are older have become an industry! People are living longer, we have our own agencies like Age Concern, we have become a new market for people who want to sell us things, our votes are valuable to politicians who recognise that democracy means something to us, and medics study us under the subject of gerontology, that inelegant word.
So to quite a lot of people we are important, and our importance is growing.
I am encouraged by the euroresidentes directorate to continue with these blogs. I shall do so, but perhaps less often. And I will always value your comments. Thanks for looking me up!