I’ve had two bypass surgeries, a hip replacement, new knees, fought prostate cancer and diabetes.
I am half blind, can’t hear anything quieter than a jet engine,
Take 40 different medicines that make me dizzy, winded and subject to blackouts.
I have bouts of dementia and bad circulation.
I hardly feel my hands and feet anymore.
I can’t remember if I am 85 or 92.
I have lost all my friends but, thank God, I still have my driver’s license.
After a long busy and active summer I am now ready to begin writing my weekly blogs and I want to begin by expressing my anger at those in the media and political arena who are making it almost scandalous when a candidate for political office reaches their late 60’s and early 70’s and label them as old and question their ability to take on major responsibilities due to possible health problems.
My dear friends I am 87 years of age and I come from a family (both sides) in which most of my relatives lived—and some continue to do so actively busy and involved in life, into their late 80’s and 90’s.
In fact many of the world’s great business and political leaders of both sexes made great contributions to society in their later years.
Let me share this experience with you: in 1956 the Automobile Industry celebrated its 50th anniversary. I was in my mid teens and the President of my high school Student Body. My school principle Bill Stirton, who later went on to be the Dean of the University of Michigan, was selected to head the auto industry’s 50th anniversary celebration which included a major parade down the main street of Detroit, Michigan.
Bill asked me to help him with the event and specifically wanted me to contact Henry Ford and Connie Mack, both in their late 80’s, to ask them to run a 5 mile foot race down the middle of Woodward Avenue to highlight the event. I did so and spent hours with them and never before had worked with two more mentally and physically exciting elderly persons. And by the way, like most persons of their age, both have experienced health issues during life’s journey, which never stopped them from being active and productive lives.
Every day of my life, as I speak to groups about my book “How to Prepare for Old Age—Without Taking the Fun Out of Life” I meet active persons in their 70’s, 80’ ad 90’s who are as smart and active and sharper than many half their age.
The idea that, because of a number, you are considered incapable of handing complex jobs and contributing to society is just plain nuts. I am known as the 87 year old 17 year old kid and I know that you are only old when you stop using your knowledge and experience to do great things.
Bernie Otis is a well known Food, Beverage & Laundry Consultant, Writer, Speaker and Author whose Best Selling Book “How to prepare for Old Age—Without Taking the Fun Out of Life” is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
Read my Blogs at http://seniormomentswithbernardotis.com/ or reach me at 818-519-8347