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Old 09-20-2014, 04:28 PM   #41
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I hope I will be able to do as well as 85 year old Gillian Bennett
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Old 09-20-2014, 04:33 PM   #42
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Didn't think about it much until I turned 60, despite getting diabetes the year before. Now I find myself checking ages in the obits as a benchmark
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Old 09-20-2014, 05:00 PM   #43
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At 64 with two stents in a heart artery last July this topic has definitely crossed my mind. No heart damage so I'm optimistic about the outcome but it was a reality/mortality check. I went to a alumni association picnic this afternoon with bunch of people I used to work with. As one guy put it "How did everyone get so old?"

But most were doing pretty much what they wanted to, one in a wheel chair because of back pain but was optimistic that it was a temporary condition that was not going to last. A few of them I know only by reputation since they retired before I was hired in 1973 - that gives me cause for optimism as well!
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Old 09-20-2014, 05:16 PM   #44
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I still w*ork
I think we have pinpointed the problem.

Seriously, don't let it get you down. You'll probably find (as I have) that it gets easier to deal with as you get older. I just treat every day as a gift and try to make the most of it.
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Old 09-20-2014, 05:24 PM   #45
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I still follow "The Adventures of George & Ms Tioga." In some ways, this is the way I would like to head toward the end and in other ways not.

If you recall, George & his RV, Ms Tioga, spend ten years traveling and Blogging daily about his adventures. Then about a year ago, he was driving down the highway and the next thing he knows he was being awakened, in the middle of a field, and Ms Tioga is completely destroyed. He is now living in an Apartment and his RV is an electric Bicycle and an electric automobile.

BTW, he started his "adventure" after being diagnosed with terminal Cancer. Now in his late seventies, he has slowed down only a little. (Well, his Blog posts are very few and far between.)

Here is the Post he offered today in which he talks about his experiencing the worst thing in Mortality -- when the parent outlives the child.

The Adventures of Tioga and George: My son David
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Old 09-20-2014, 06:26 PM   #46
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I had my first real sense of mortality when my 22 year old daughter died suddenly one night. I knew then that I was not afraid to die as I would be with her once again. That was 15 years ago and I still think of her daily. That tragic event changed my life completely.

Two years ago, my youngest sister passed quickly from brain cancer at 57 years old in Connecticut and when we went to the funeral, I, the oldest in the family, had a real sense that I am alone for some reason. I still have one sister left, but parents are gone.

While I still have a good outlook on the rest of my days, and try to help everyone I can in the family, I have started to sense an element of what I call "running out of time". No one in my immediate family (aunts, uncles, etc) lived much past 70. I seem to be the current leader in that camp. I am pretty healthy with not much loss of body flexibility, desire or brain power, but there are times I sense things changing.

I try not to think about mortality but it has indicators all around me anymore. Kind of sucks in some regard.
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Old 09-20-2014, 07:00 PM   #47
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I should have been killed at least three times in my life. (Ran over by a boat, almost hit by a train in Amsterdam and War).

I am only 33 but I have thought about mortality since I stopped drinking at age 26. I have a bit of anxiety so that doesn't help but I know how to deal with it by enjoying myself and thanking the man upstairs every morning before I head off to work.

My recent hang-up was the thought of living life on a daily basis without my ole man around. Its caused me to hound him about protecting his money (something I think will offset the pain when he is gone by continuing to selflessly help his heirs as he has done his entire life). A lot of times I find myself really wanting to just spend quality time with him as I know mortality is inevitable. Unfortunately the time I spend with him is not always quality and it reminds me how fickle the human race and this revolving planet really are.

Live life to the fullest, go bungee jumping or take your grand kids out for ice-cream...tomorrow will not come for everyone.
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Old 09-20-2014, 08:32 PM   #48
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I should have been killed at least three times in my life. (Ran over by a boat, almost hit by a train in Amsterdam and War)....
Perhaps this should be the topic of a separate thread, but I might have been killed at least four times in my life--that I know of. (I may have had other "close calls" that to this day I am not aware of.)

1. Around age 8, in Long Beach, CA, while wading in chest-high water, I was swept out into the ocean about 30 yards or so, and went under. Then another wave soon swept me back to shore. That was frightening. I learned to swim soon after that.

2. Around age 25, while driving down a narrow two-lane back road, I hit some black ice. My car did a 180 and slid into a shallow ditch on the opposite side of the road. If the car had gone to the right, instead of doing a 180 and going left across the road, I would have gone over a steep, deep hillside to an almost certain demise.

3. Around age 40, I guess, the traffic light at an intersection turned green for me. But I double-checked both sides anyway before stepping on the gas, only to see that a car on my left was blowing thru his red light. Had I just casually gone forward I would have certainly been T-boned.

4. Around age 45 I was crossing the street one morning, heading to w*rk. The traffic and pedestrian lights had just turned in my favor, but I noticed that a guy turning his car was looking behind over his left shoulder, to see if there were any cars coming, and crossed in my path. Had I not paid attention to him, although all lights were in my favor, he would have mowed me down. He missed me by "that much," to quote Agent 86.

I am thankful every day. I say that each morning as I climb out of bed and put my feet on the floor. And try to remember to say it again as I climb back into bed every night.
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Old 09-20-2014, 10:03 PM   #49
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Years ago my DH was in a bank that was robbed. DH never saw the robber but the gun was at his head. Every day since has been a blessing.

I think many people exercise control over their own passing. My MIL, who had a devastating cancer, waited until her eldest son came to town to see her, then had to leave, before she passed. It was as if she did not want her sons to see her go.

My dad became unresponsive one morning after being bedridden for 4 months. I saw him several times per week. I was called and came to his bedside. The hospice nurse was there--she was meant to be a comfort but was a stranger to me, as well as a staff nurse at the assisted living place. I could see dad was comfortable and breathing very slowly. I asked these strangers to leave. I then told dad it was ok to leave us, that my sister and I and all of us were ok, that mom was waiting for him, as was his best friend who had passed a few months earlier. I kissed him, held his hand, and he peacefully passed on.

I felt the gift of my dad's trust in me in that experience.

Yesterday I found the time to take a walk in a beautiful place near my current transitional work. This ER thing, it 's not about ER. It's about more time to just live, without the stress of pleasing someone else.


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Old 09-21-2014, 12:57 AM   #50
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Years ago my DH was in a bank that was robbed. DH never saw the robber but the gun was at his head. Every day since has been a blessing.

I think many people exercise control over their own passing. My MIL, who had a devastating cancer, waited until her eldest son came to town to see her, then had to leave, before she passed. It was as if she did not want her sons to see her go.

My dad became unresponsive one morning after being bedridden for 4 months. I saw him several times per week. I was called and came to his bedside. The hospice nurse was there--she was meant to be a comfort but was a stranger to me, as well as a staff nurse at the assisted living place. I could see dad was comfortable and breathing very slowly. I asked these strangers to leave. I then told dad it was ok to leave us, that my sister and I and all of us were ok, that mom was waiting for him, as was his best friend who had passed a few months earlier. I kissed him, held his hand, and he peacefully passed on.

I felt the gift of my dad's trust in me in that experience.

Yesterday I found the time to take a walk in a beautiful place near my current transitional work. This ER thing, it 's not about ER. It's about more time to just live, without the stress of pleasing someone else.


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Beautiful story... Thank you very much for sharing.


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Old 09-21-2014, 10:24 AM   #51
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A good friend just lost his grandfather a few days short of 101. He had been deaf and blind for a VERY long time but his mind was sharp.

My friend's father (GD's son) is EXHAUSTED. Nearly daily trips to see his father. At 72 he has NOT lived his own retirement. Never traveled .... limited his hobbies to home activities. Now he's unmotivated to spend his inheritance (a 7 figure number).

There are worst things than death .... need to think about who you TAKE DOWN with you.
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Old 09-21-2014, 08:56 PM   #52
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Close calls? Wow, so many I sometimes wonder why I'm still alive. Almost run over by a car at age 5. Crashed a motorcycle at age 17, being stupid. No body suit, no helmet, it's a wonder I didn't crush my head on a curb. Bad case of road rash was it, and that heals quickly when you're 17.

29 years a police officer. More close calls than I can count and probably some I don't even know about like the time I stopped a guy for some traffic violation and gave him a warning. Found out later if I'd come back with a ticket he'd have shot me. Stuff like that.

Randomness is like that.
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Old 09-21-2014, 09:04 PM   #53
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I had a ticket on a US Air flight in September of 94 that crashed. A client moved a meeting, so I didn't take the flight. I had taken the same flight on the same day the two previous weeks.

September 11th, 2001 I was registered at the Risk Waters conference in Windows of the World, WTC 1. I had a mid morning conference call, which I decided to do at home and go late to the conference. No one at the conference survived.

I had other traffic close calls, but those two really stand out for the pure randomness that almost put me there, then didn't.
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Old 09-21-2014, 09:14 PM   #54
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Definitely reflect on this now and then. Was brought into focus in 2008 when one of my best friends from grade school died at 48 and again this past June when another good friend from high school died. The former friend had suffered from asthma through his youth and was somewhat frail but the latter was our high school valedictorian and a great athlete. Many good reasons to try to make the best of each day and count all my many blessings.
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Old 09-21-2014, 09:33 PM   #55
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I'm glad to see this thread. Acknowledging our mortality is essential to making the most of life.

The media love to emphasize how lifespans are getting longer. I think that's left many with the impression that we're going to make past 100 (looking great and in good health), although that's far from the truth.

According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the average life expectancy in 2011 was 76 for men and 81 for women in the U.S. But, of course, you can't live by averages...
Definitely can't live by 'averages' especially when you consider that the longer you live, the longer you live. That is to say that the 'average' is lowered by those of your cohort who have died before you. So once you survive to 50 or 60 or 70, your 'average' life expectancy gets further and further above the average for your cohort at birth.
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Old 09-21-2014, 10:07 PM   #56
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My sense of mortality hit when I lost both of my parents in a 2 year span. They lived a very full and joyful life. That was a couple years ago and I have never been the same. I accepted the passing of the torch from my father to me as a husband and father. In his last days, my father, said to take care of my health and everything else will be fine. He said that he had a great life and challenged me to have an even better one. I accepted that many of my best attributes (looks, sense of humor, etc) came from my mother. My mother had dementia but she always smiled when I walked into the room and that's all we needed together.

What I struggle with is what others have previously said, through their passing I had finally realized I was not going to live forever and in fact have less time in front of me then behind me. However, maybe their passing is the natural wake up call for me to not wish my life away but finish strong. As my user name says, it's all about Balance. Learning from the past, Planning for the future, but living in the present. It's the Journey not the destination that counts
Very similar for me. Both parents passed way 18 months apart about 2.5 years ago. I was only 48 oldest sibliung, and my youngest sister only 36. She made the comment "I am too young to not have my parents around". That kind of struck hard, not that I could change it, but it *was* too young for your parents to be gone. Even for me at 48, being the new head of the family was a pretty major event where I had that mortality awakening.

However life goes on and you have to make the most of what you can, and one of the main reasons I intend to retire early within 1-2 years max. I want my years left to be full of being able to do what I want to do, not have to do.
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