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Life After 55

Repost: Dementia Caregiving and Hospice, After55 Radio Episode 18

I recently had lunch with a friend whose parent is living with Alzheimer’s Disease. We spoke at length about the difficulties she was facing in caring for her loved one. After our meeting, I was reminded of the wonderful and informative segment I did back in the days of my radio show Live Long, Live Well with a prominent Alzheimer’s expert. I decided to repost the episode for the benefit of others who may also be facing a similar situation.

This episode featured Jan Dougherty, Family and Community Services Director at Arizona’s Banner Alzheimer’s Institute. Jan is responsible for setting new standards of care for patients with dementia and their families through the development of innovative programs.  She has developed many pioneering programs being used in Arizona and nationally.

Jan was named “Gerontologist of the Year” in 2003 by the AZ Geriatrics Society and received the “Caring Spirit Award” in 2005 from the Area Agency on Aging, Region One. She was awarded the Vision Award in 2006 from Hospice of the Valley, the Nation’s largest non-profit hospice organization. We were honored to have an opportunity to speak with her about some of the programs she has pioneered.

Press PLAY button to listen to this podcast:


The Crabby Old Man

Whether it’s a true story or urban myth, this poem I received today is really beautiful. The story goes that when a crabby old man died in the geriatric ward of a nursing home, the nurses went through his things and found this poem scrawled on a piece of paper. The news of the poem spread and it was eventually published in the Christmas edition of the News Magazine of the St. Louis Association for Mental Health. I share it with you now and ask you to ponder its meaning. The next time you meet an older person don’t forget they still have the spirit of a young soul within: (more…)

Welcome To After55 Living – Resources For Your Life After 55

After55 Living is a comprehensive online resource for seniors and their families featuring news and information gathered from leading print publications, broadcast networks, web video channels and podcasts. Our mission is to help educate, entertain and inform our visitors about all aspects of aging.

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Legislative Updates Life After 55 Memories
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Life is a ball…

I came across this beautiful video on  YouTube that was produced by Eskaton, an assisted living provider in Northern California. It is beautifully written and produced. Send a beautiful message about aging and dignity – “It’s not the years in your life but the life in your years that counts!”

I hope you enjoy watching it as much as I did!

Old Age, From Youth’s Narrow Prism

Article appeared in NY Times: March 3, 2010:

Old Age, From Youth’s Narrow Prism by Dr. Marc E. Agronin

The old woman had drawn down the shade in her room — hoping, I imagined, to stop the midday Miami sun from penetrating her grief. But the sun still hit the window full force and illuminated the shade like a Chinese lantern.

She sat silently in a wheelchair, her 93-year-old silhouette stooped in the bathing light. I entered, held her hand for a moment and introduced myself. “Sit down, doctor,” she said politely. (more…)


photo – courtesy of my camera…Arizona sunsets are unbelievable

This e-mail is provided as a courtesy of the Governor’s Advisory Council on Aging. It is our intent to offer the Legislative Update weekly during the 2009 session of the Arizona State Legislature. The purpose of this service is to keep Arizona’s seniors and advocates for aging services informed about bills and action taking place at the Legislature. The information provided is intended to help you form your own opinion about an issue and to give you the necessary resources and contacts to help ensure your perspective and voice are heard. Please note the Legislative Update is non-partisan in nature. We thank you for your interest!


photo courtesy of flickr and robert huffstutter

The Assisted Living Federation of America reported that parting with “stuff” is keeping some seniors from moving into assisted living communities. The Household Moves Project has been launched which will look at how a seniors stuff can hinder a senior from living independently, safely, and as healthy as possible. This three-year project will follow 100 individuals and 65 couples in and around Kansas City and Detroit from the time they decide to move into smaller spaces until after the move. This is a subject near and dear to my (more…)


Another great and yet brief video by The National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Inc. on Medicaid.  Any family looking for a reputable and knowledgeable attorney who specializes in elder law should visit the website for the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys at . You will find a list of Elder Law attorneys in your state.

Digital Publishing for Seniors – find digital editions of senior resource guides, magazines, brochures and newspapers at the the web’s only interactive library for aging adults at


I received this “touch”ing article about what massage does to help the loneliness in a seniors life and wanted to share it with all of you. An astounding 75% of all seniors who reside in assisted living or nursing homes never get visitors much less get touched. I hope this wonderfully written article will inspire someone to visit their loved ones and touch them. I know in my own life what a gentle touch does for me and although this article is wrtiten about massage easing the elderly’s loneliness, a gentle touch can also bring joy to a senior who needs to know they are still loved and cared about.

Using Massage to Ease the Elderly’s Loneliness
Lifespan: Hands to Hold
By Karrie Osborn
Originally published in Massage & Bodywork magazine, August/September 2004.
Copyright 2004. Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals. All rights reserved.

Loneliness Can Find Us All
It’s not that she was neglected or abandoned by her family. She hadn’t been cheated out of a full life, and she wasn’t bitter about the cards she’d been dealt. On the contrary, she was a happy, well-loved woman who was full of faith, even after being widowed for more than 20 years. But no amount of faith could keep this elderly woman from being struck with loneliness after sitting alone, day after day, in her new home — a 12-by-12 room in a full-care nursing facility. She would rarely let on to her family that the isolation could be overwhelming, but visits started to end with extra-long, extra-tight hugs, and phone calls were a welcome lifeline to the world. (more…)


I got the biggest kick out of this video. One of the After55 blog readers read our blog and shared this video with us so I thought I would pass it on. My own mom and dad had been married 64 years before their passing. I wish I had recorded their memory of their first encounter with eachother. I remember the story well and when I can dig out a photo of mom and dad I will write what mom thought of dad the first time she saw him. I may have to censor it..LOL  For those of you new to reading blogs or even emails, the initials, LOL, are a short way of saying Laugh Out Loud. Yep, there is something new to learn everyday! Enjoy the video.

Digital Publishing for Seniors – find digital editions of senior resource guides, magazines and newspapers at the web’s only interactive library for seniors and their familes at