1. End-of-Life Decisions

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    Over the course of 10 years I made end-of-life decisions for three unique individuals: my mother, my aunt Lena, and my cousin Fred. I was the health care proxy for all of them. In spite of good care, thoughtful interventions, and supportive environments each was on a path towards dying....
  2. A Caregiver’s Reflection on Atlas

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    1
    I have been a caregiver for numbers of loved ones. Most were old and all were unable to care for themselves towards the ends of their lives. During these “watching-over” years, I made forays into diverse and unfamiliar places, and struggled with frightening uncertainty. I took on these jobs not...
  3. Remembering Turning Seven

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    My birthday is Aug. 1 and every year I reflect a lot around this time. Last year’s thoughts were particularly intense. It was because my older granddaughter, Hannah, turned seven. My birth date falls in a small cluster with other family members. My sister Paula’s is July 29 and Hannah’s...
  4. Meaningful Legacy

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    The other day I bumped into a friend at the supermarket. After checking in with each other, he said “you should write an article about legacy.” I jotted the idea on my shopping list (I have many scraps of paper with ideas to  explore) and proceeded to tell him that...
  5. The Silent Generation

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    Almost every day as I read the newspaper, watch television, listen to the radio or look through AARP publications there is talk about the Baby Boom Generation. As we all know baby boomers are those who were born in the post WWII years between 1945 and 1964, there are a...
  6. Walking and Talking

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    I know I should exercise more and am aware of all the good reasons why: make my heart pump; keep my muscles strong; get rid of minor aches; and clear my mind. Exercise for me is primarily about walking. I try to walk two or three times a week mostly...
  7. Our Houses and Our Dreams

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    I have an intimate relationship with my house. This place, with its straight walls and boxy windows, supports and surrounds me with stability and comfort. It is small and sturdy — it suits me. I feel safe in this familiar house, knowing all the ins and outs of living here...
  8. Should I Stay or Should I Go?

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    Like so many people my age I wonder whether I should stay in my house or go someplace else. It has taken me years of investigation and deliberation trying to understand this complex, thorny issue. In my learning journey I visited rentals, condominiums, and “continuing care” communities. Each place had...

About Marian

Marian Leah Knapp, Ph.D., wants to start a new conversation about “aging with intent.” Much of what is written about elders is from the point of view of physicians, psychiatrists, gerontologists, and adult children. In her roles as author, columnist, speaker and elder activist, Marian is reporting from the front lines.
Full biography

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