Tag Archives: Senior

Don’t Make Me Use my Senior Citizen Voice! By Linda Knight Seccaspina

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Don’t Make Me Use my Senior Citizen Voice! By Linda Knight Seccaspina

Don’t Make Me Use my Senior Citizen Voice! By Linda Knight Seccaspina

A few weeks ago I received a note from a top Canadian Bank advising me that once I turned 70 on July 24, that my ‘insurance’ on  one of my investments, or was it a loan, would be cut off.  My son explained it to me like this:”cash surrender value on the policy”. I still don’t get it.

Frankly, I never expected with my inherited health lineage to live this long, but here I am.  But why did the bank pick the age of 70? People typically lose almost one-half inch in height every 10 years after the age of 40. Height loss is even more rapid after age 70. There is no doubt I am shorter, but was that one of the reasons? Three inches shorter at the bank counter and not making honest eye level with the teller anymore?

We know being a senior is not all unicorns and rainbows, but was I really going to drop dead the day after 70 and therefore be uninsurable?  Maybe when I walked into the bank one day they saw my foot that has been swollen since the birth of son number one 36 years ago and realized I wear a normal shoe on one foot and a shoe box on the other. Maybe the crepey skin on my arms caught their attention. That word “crepey” is still a new one to me.

The day I turned 60 was an important milestone for me with the same bank and they sent me several letters of warm congratulations. In the lovely letters they thanked me for being a devoted client for many years. In recognition of turning 60 they were going to give me a monthly rebate of $4.00 on my monthly fees. That’s right! Instead of charging me $13.95 a month I would be paying $9.95 instead.

I sat there and wondered what I would be able to do with the extra $4.00 savings each month. Would $4.00 buy me a package of Depends down the road? As I continued to read the letter they also told me that my banking needs might change over time, yet they never mentioned the word “70”.  The popular bank also reminded me that it was an important time in my life now and they wanted to help me reach my goals.

Goals?

What goals?

Triathlons?

Freshman College?

If I can get up in the morning and walk and talk at the same time I am on a roll for the day. So thank you dear bank for being so concerned. But now ten years later it seems to be another story. Honestly, if you think about it I am really 18 years old with 52 years experience— or 21 in celsius.  Honestly, I feel like maybe I should put up a for sale sign that says : “For Sale- 70 year-old, needs parts, but only one owner”.

When I became a town councillor I got involved with senior advocacy groups as I have always felt seniors feel less important, and they shouldn’t. Even as a teenager when I volunteered at the Nesbitt Senior Residence in Cowansville I knew the seniors felt they were being ignored and that our society values young folks more. Did you know ageism is one of the most tolerated forms of discrimination in Canada?

I was telling my friend Toby that seniors are now treated like trying to insure any home built before 1920 and he agreed. He said, “seniors make some people nervous and twitchy” and he is right. As Dr. Seuss wrote: “You’re Only Old Once” and life does not end when wage earning capacity ends. My mind is still functioning and so is my fashion wardrobe. I am still young at heart, but slightly older in some places. I am never going to change and one day I want to be that little old lady that puts vodka in the IV bags at the retirement home.  

Yes, we sometimes stumble, we suffer and we transcend, but we are positive, still have our sense of humour, and need some respect. If things do get better with age— then my fellow seniors, we are all approaching magnificence– and please don’t forget our discounts!

Related reading

Since When did the Word “Senior” Become a Dirty Word?

Being Old is No Place for Sissies! Part 2

Being Old is No Place for Sissies

Did You Know About the Golden Girls Act? BILL 69– More Homes, More Choice: Ontario’s Housing Supply Action Plan

Being Old is No Place for Sissies! Part 2

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Being Old is No Place for Sissies! Part 2

As I sit on a cemetery of rolled socks on my bed I wonder why I get up each morning. At almost 70 my legs and my knees are bad from various falls and I am a klutz. Each morning I try to put a pair of socks on and I fail. Either the knees won’t bend or somehow a sock gets pulled on and it either feels weird like the top of the sock is on my heel and I just give up. At the end of the week the rolled socks are put back in the drawer until I have to go outside which is rare these days.

Today was the day to get groceries and it is -16 C outside and socks are a must. I yell, I cry, one knee will not bend but I can’t give up. Not today. A close friend died a few weeks ago and I must take something to the family. I heard they were receiving a lot of food so I decided beverages were the way to go. Going anywhere I need my husband Steve to help me as the great white outdoors has become a challenge to me. I have no idea what happens when I venture outside the house. Suddenly the smooth and straight home floors turn into a Vesuvius Volcano erupting and each bump in the outside world is conducive to tripping over. One way to find out that you’re old is to fall down: if they laugh at you –you are still young. If they start to panic like they do when I trip and fall you’re in the old age bracket. I usually lay there and think: ‘oh great, is this what we are doing now?’

Last week I had already bought the beverages for the family and left them in the back seat. Anyone clever would know that even in a garage those cans are going to freeze. Each day I listened to the weather and never once did I think about canned drinks sitting on the back seat. Until– Thursday when my husband phoned me from work to say there had been an explosion in the back seat. He said it looked like glass shards everywhere, when in reality the cans had exploded and it was ice.

Socks on, ready for the world, I suddenly sneeze and I will not go into details, but pants must now be changed. How did I ever get here?  I can laugh, cough, sneeze and pee at the same time. In my mind I consider myself the closest to Moira Rose on Schitt’s Creek you will ever see. Wigs hanging in the hat room, jewellery to rival any Bollywood wedding, but I have never once seen Moira go through this. Maybe I rival Phyllis Diller more than Moira and no one has the heart to tell me. I am still at that delusional age where I think everyone that I went to High School with looks older than me. Just like the COVID grey hair coming through the once red hair are now called my wisdom highlights.

My husband asked me if my socks are okay because he has heard all about my predicament in stereo for a long time. He gently asks if he can fix them and I just shake my head and say no. I softly say to him, ‘This my train wreck and this isn’t your station!’

People look at me and are flabbergasted I will be 70 this July. Unfortunately when they hear me stand up and hear the sound effects I make they catch on pretty quickly. I guess I just thought getting old would take a little longer. How fast it happened is still a bit of a surprise. Now the night time leg cramps come and you think to yourself: ‘This is it, this is how it ends!’

I remember the nights of dancing all night– and tap dancing at various Rocky Horror Picture Shows. Those days may be gone, but it’s how you take it. My mind is still functioning and so is my fashion wardrobe. I am still young at heart, but slightly older in some places. I am never going to change and one day I want to be that little old lady that puts vodka in the IV bags at the retirement home. So yes I have my complaints, but I would rather make people laugh about them, because we are all in this together. So next time you are slow at moving and things fall apart, remember that ageing gracefully is an art– but ageing disgracefully is a total blast!

Related reading

Being Old is No Place for Sissies

Since When did the Word “Senior” Become a Dirty Word?

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Since When did the Word “Senior” Become a Dirty Word?

 

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My name is Linda Knight Seccaspina and I am a senior citizen. I am not a perennial, nor a golden ager, and I refuse to “age gracefully”. I dislike all the fancy new words they use to describe what my Grandmother Mary Deller Knight used to call a “pensioner”. Each time I see a new description of a senior I shake my head and wonder who got offended this week that they saw the need for a name change.

None of us seniors describe ourselves as old, even though it is staring us in the face, but these youngsters keep searching for a word that won’t offend old people.There is a 3 decade difference between 60 and 90– I know that for a fact even though I failed math. But alas, last time I asked for help at a grocery store, help was directed over to the ‘old gal over there’. Looks like I am not fooling anyone with the hats and the youthful attire– only myself.  But the fact is we are too sensitive these days and everything seems too politically correct.

So where did this new identifying of seniors come from?  Well, rumour says it stems from the 50 year-olds who do not want to be known as senior citizens. Really? Yup, they kicked the name ‘senior” to the curb and people listened. They did not want to be identified with the images of nursing homes, dentures and The Golden Girls. Speaking of the Golden Girls every week I go visit my mother in law in her senior residence they are constantly playing reruns of that hit TV show. Honestly, does changing the name from seniors to something else stop us from being on a loop of Estelle Getty reruns?

Some of the ladies were trying to bolt on Tuesday (one might think from those reruns) and the emergency door of course would not open. My mother in law pointed a finger at me and told them: 

“She’s young, she thinks she knows everything, she probably has the key!”

With that I was faced with a circle of angry faces of people actually older than I am. I don’t know everything, and certainly don’t have a key, but I also don’t have an answer to what is going on right now. Is it up to us latter 60 year-olds to begin a revolution against all these fancy names that mean nothing to us?  

I worked hard to get to this age and mentally feel young. Aging happens to everyone. The problem about changing the name from Senior Citizens to anything else is just another way to confuse us, and euphemisms will not slow the march of time.

I can’t remember giving anyone permission to speak for me, and as long as I get my senior discounts I’m happy. I have a lot of vibrancy and being called a senior citizen does not make me feel old. We are all individuals no matter what age we are. How about the younger folks adjust their mind to think about “senior citizens” and becoming one in a positive frame of mind. I don’t need to be referred to in another way so I can remain in a safe zone– it seems all too PC to me.

Thank you!

 

 

I do believe there was an almost senior citizen performing here LOLOL — Thanks Terry Poulos:)

Hello Darkness my Old Friend-I’ve Come to Dye the Grey Again

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Linda Knight Seccaspina -1954- at her Grandmother’s Mary Knight’s home on South Street in Cowansville, Quebec.

The aftermath of turning 65–July 24, 8:36 PM

So how did I get here?  I really don’t mind turning 65.  Actually, I had a harder time on my 41st birthday. Then, there was the year I seem to have lost somewhere. It doesn’t matter if I am 60 or 65- no one is going to tell me to get ready to enjoy an early- bird senior special at some restaurant. I am also not sitting here wishing I had done this and that, because I honestly gave life that old college try. You can’t help getting older, but you don’t have to get old.

 

Following one’s true passions can mean following the heart’s true desire which, being a heart-centred approach, requires getting out of one’s own head and into one’s own heart. Some people will never get that there exists a variety of folks-they want everyone to fit into the same box like clones. I have never changed who I am.  After all, if you don’t do something stupid, or take a chance when you are young, how in the heck are you going to remember the funny things when you are old.

 

I think I have done it all, and I have no regrets except typing away on a laptop knowing that if it ever breaks down I will cry like a baby. I might be creative, but I am lacking a gene of good old common sense on many things, no matter how old I am. Nothing makes feel older than to sit there filling out some form and having to scroll down a page or two to find my year of birth.

 

It’s weird how people hate getting older–I may be older, but I most certainly am never becoming a classic. So live your life and not your age- and the government better have my first old age pension in my bank account next month. Remember, the biggest challenge in life is to be yourself in a world that is trying to make you like everyone else. Of course as my son said last night,

“We were going to put 65 candles on the cupcakes, but thought better lest a jet mistake them for a runway!”

Thank you for all the birthday wishes! It was so overwhelming!

 

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Linda Knight Seccaspina, July 23, 2016- learning how to play PokemonGo from her friend Paxton whose mother runs The Crunchy Cabin at the Carleton Place Farmers Market. Old dogs can learn new tricks! Well, maybe!

My two favourite singers are Patsy Cline and Kitty Wells- I was lucky to see Kitty in concert at the Spencerville Fair years ago. It was on my bucket list.

 

Should We Give Up Our Senior Discounts? – Zoomers

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Should We Give Up Our Senior Discounts? – Zoomers.

 

“An article in Huffington Post written by Lorie Eber yesterday suggested we elderly give up our senior discounts to save the world and not leave future generations bankrupt. Is someone out of college more deserving of a price break than us? Is there really a difference between a senior discount and corporate discounts? What about the Wall Street predators and their “discounts”?  I just got my first Canada Pension payment this week and no one is taking that away from me. My neighbour also said if she stops getting her coupons for cat food somebody’s going to hear about it!”