Each day approximately 10,000 baby boomers turn 65! That’s a staggering number when you consider the impact this aging population has on our nation’s resources. Unfortunately, we’re living in a time when political friction is great and resources are not.
I’m looking to identify and advocate for what will help maintain happiness in my later years.
Obviously, we all need and want good health, enough money, and a comfortable place to live and share fellowship with family and friends. These are the main things in life we’re all working to acquire and maintain.
Aside from these big wants and needs, there are some I hadn’t thought of that could positively impact my future happiness as I age.
Here are seven things that I, and perhaps you, may want for the future:
- Self-driving cars – If pubic transportation doesn’t improve in my rural neighborhood, at least a self-driving car would keep me more independent for many years. I’d love the idea of being driven where I want to go … sort of like being chauffeured!
- Higher interest rates – When I first calculated my retirement income, I factored in 5% interest on my savings, which would have significantly increased my income. What a joke! Today the highest rate I receive is 1.5% on a CD, and that CD ties up my funds for an unreasonable amount of time.
- Good public transportation – There isn’t enough government funding for long-term plans for automobiles let alone expansion ideas for public transportation. Eventually, I’d like to get rid of my car for both energy and financial conservation, especially if self-driving technology hasn’t progressed. Public transportation would need to improve before I got rid of my car completely.
- Home-based health care – I want to stay in my home, especially during times when I have health issues. It seems beneficial to be treated at home, if at all possible, both for my own desires and to avoid the high cost for institutions to house me in their facilities.
- Architectural design – More homes and businesses need to accommodate someone in a wheelchair or using a walker, having access to light switches, and being easily able to get upstairs.
- Education for new technology – There’s nothing more frustrating and crazy-making than not being able to use my own new phone, TV, car, or other technological innovation because I can’t figure out how to operate. At least some new cell phone makers have one-time, hands-on workshops where instruction and practice is provided by a certified technician. I’d prefer one-on-one training because I’m a show-me again, again, and again, kind of user. I can feel so stupid.
- More geriatric doctors – I have excellent access to health care, and I hope you do too, but my doctor is busy, and I can’t imagine how she is able to stay current with all the issues specifically affecting senior citizens. I wish for more doctors who only deal with us older folks.
As a powerfully large group of citizens, both socially and politically, it’s up to us to make sure we continue to identify and inform others as to what’s going to keep us humming alone. Hopefully, the above list will get you started thinking about what needs and desires you may have that are beyond the basics.
And, it goes without saying, we need to be proactive by supporting and voting for politicians who advocate for our wants and needs – the small as well as the big ones.
Today, my needs and wants are being met, and I hope you can say the same. Do we need to defend ongoing services and considerations of our special needs? Absolutely! If we go quietly, especially in the current political climate, we’ll be easily overlooked and may find ourselves without resources that enable us to enjoy our remaining time.