99 Years Old: Still Sending and Writing Messages on Christmas Cards

Sending the Christmas Cards

I phone 99-year-old Sr. Advisor R and ask the usual “How are you?” question. Response: “I’ve already written notes on 35 Christmas cards that have gone out…and there are more to go.  I’ve received 30-some cards. When you’re old I think people want to know how you are so I send back a card with a note.

You know I’ve said I wasn’t sending cards any longer, but how can I not when people are so good to me!

…I’ve already been given gifts–a lot of good candy, a huge poinsettia I’ve put in the kitchen, the girls (neighbors in their 40’s and 50’s) made me soup which I love especially in the winter ’cause you know it’s cold and it warms me up, and Carol brought some custard yesterday.

Did I tell you I received the most beautifully packaged box of chocolate candy from Dennis?” (a contractor who sends one of his men to do handyman work when R needs it. Dennis’s father, now deceased, helped R in that way when he ran the business). Old fashion loyalty and caring, and in a large city too–how can R not send a card and write the thank you note.

R. recovered from her broken hip–it will be 2 years ago the end of January. Since then she uses a cane when going out of her home.  “A remarkable recovery,” according to the doctors, and proof broken hip recovery can be achieved by a 97-year-old. Currently R is slowly making progress with a recent nonhealing skin wound/cut mentioned in a previous post. The doctor at the wound care center has been a Godsend; and the fact that R is finally making progress has brightened her outlook considerably.  I assume that’s the reason she changed her mind and decided to send cards again.

Everyone says Sr. Advisor R is “amazing” and clearly she is. And aren’t we lucky when we can be around inspirational old people. We can learn–from their example and their wisdom–to age well.

That said, I’ve been thinking that I’d like to introduce several new amazing elders on this blog.  If you know an older person who fits that description, and wish to submit his/her name–along with the relationship to you and specific experiences that support featuring him/her on Help! Aging Parents–please contact me at my gmail address ( or click ‘CONTACT’ tab above).  Many of our elders have so much wisdom to share and no one needs to know their name unless they wish to share that also.