Vignettes in Aging – Independence

Independence to an older person is often very different than it is to a young or middle-aged person. There is no question, however, that we ALL share the same desires for freedom and independence as outlined in our Constitution. The desire for equal rights under the law is a given, and I wish them for ALL people.

While young people may equate freedom and independence with things that include right to assemble, bear arms, travel, and protest, the elder community sees freedom and independence including things not listed in the Constitution or Bill of Rights.

Freedom of choice is what is important to us elders.  We’ve worked hard, and now is the time to enjoy, as much as we are able, those activities and places that fill our hearts with joy and satisfaction. For lots of seniors that’s being able to travel; for others it’s painting or writing or hosting family and friends.

Sometimes we take our freedoms and opportunities for independence for granted. This past year and a half has seen a resurgence of efforts for limitations on our choices. It is good every once in awhile to be reminded that our ability to choose isn’t something that just exists without doing anything to protect that right.

What are you doing to protect your independence and freedoms afforded under our government’s established doctrines? At the very least, we all should be celebrating what we have and what we are able to do that many others around the world don’t have and freedoms they aren’t able to enjoy.

July 4th can be about family BBQ’s, fireworks (with climate change?), parades, and parties of all kinds. We’re rubbing against recent events that question at best and have changed already at worst many of our freedoms and therefore our independence.

This holiday take a moment to make sure you’ve done your part to ensure freedom and independence for all. Speak the truth out loud that this holiday represents those rights and freedoms. Many in our communities still struggle to have what we already enjoy.

And be safe.