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Aging Wisely... Wisdom of Our Elders

Author(s): Irving Silverman
Ellen Beth Siegel, JD, PsyD
  • ISBN-13: 9781284141733
  • Paperback    498 pages      © 2018
Price: $29.95 US List
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Aging Wisely… Wisdom of our Elders is a unique resource that reflects the ideas, opinions and experiences of a diverse group of senior citizens. Each story provides a unique perspective on the physical, emotional, and social aspects of growing old from those who have made the journey. Caring professionals, family and friends also come together to share their experiences working and caring for the aging population. There are also unique perspectives provided by faculty members and graduate students form the William James College of Psychology as well as a foreword by Stephen Colwell, Executive Director of NewBridge senior living community. 

Each chapter presents an aspect of aging including a discussion of physical changes, emotional losses, financials, as well as what contributes to satisfaction and happiness in later years and what may assist older adults as they continue to age. Every personal story closes with “Reflections for the Readers”, a series of questions correlated to the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education (AGHE) Core Competencies. 

Applicable Courses
This text is appropriate for anyone working or caring for the elderly as well as a valuable resource for undergraduate courses focused on:
  • Retirement and Living Communities
  • Psychology of Aging
  • Aging and Society/Social Gerontology 
  • Long Term Care Administration
  • Intro to Gerontology
*Also a valuable resource for residents and staff members of acute and non-acute care facilities. 

Part  I  Life Stories
  Chapter  1  Sharing our Stories: Emotional Comfort for Survivors
  Chapter  2  Burn and Rave
  Chapter  3  Serendipity
  Chapter  4  Exercising One’s Mind, Counting One’s Blessings
  Chapter  5  Elwood and His Golden Nature
  Chapter  6  Reflections at Age 95
  Chapter  7  The 80s Are the New 60s
Part  II  The Biology of Aging
  Chapter  8  The Second Fifty: Successful Aging
  Chapter  9  Health Changes in Older Age
  Chapter  10  Brain Health: 21st Century Science On Sustaining Memory and Thinking as We Age
  Chapter  11  Cognitive Skills: What to Expect As We Get Older
  Chapter  12  Will I Be in Good Health in My 70’s, 80’s, 90’s, 100’s?
  Chapter  13  Vision and Hearing Loss in the Elderly
  Chapter  14  Everything You Would Like to Know about Medications and Their Effect on Aging
Part  III  Emotional Responses to Aging
  Chapter  15  Aging: From Aging to Adolescence and Back Again
  Chapter  16  Notes from the Far North
  Chapter  17  Time Caught Up on Me
  Chapter  18  The Other Side of Time
  Chapter  19  From Generation to Generation
  Chapter  20  My Thickest File
Part  IV  Coming to Terms with the Changes Caused by Aging
  Chapter  21  Aging Easier
  Chapter  22  Eldercare Strategies: Useful Thoughts and Actions When You are the "Elder," When You are the "Care," When You are Both
  Chapter  23  Dealing with Hearing and Vision Loss as We Age
  Chapter  24  Adaptations
  Chapter  25  Brooding
Part  V  Using Internal Strengths
  Chapter  26  Becoming a Good Listener
  Chapter  27  Developing the Skill of Optimism
  Chapter  28  Making Each Day Count
  Chapter  29  Mastering the Art of Aging
  Chapter  30  Accepting Rejection: Finding Meaningful Replacement of What One Doesn't or Can't Have
Part  VI  Broadening Horizons
  Chapter  31  The Benefits of Volunteering as an Older Person
  Chapter  32  Prolong Your Life—Get in the Pool
  Chapter  33  Exercise and Aging: But I Don’t Wanna— How to Get Unstuck from that Easy Chair
  Chapter  34  The Importance of Travel
  Chapter  35  Accepting People with Different Backgrounds
  Chapter  36  Fitting in and Standing Out
Part  VII  Aging and Interpersonal Relationships
  Chapter  37  Intergenerational Dialogue
  Chapter  38  Reversal of Roles… Listening to My Children
  Chapter  39  Moving to be Closer to Family: Pluses and Minuses
  Chapter  40  We Were Never Afraid to Try Something New
  Chapter  41  Love and Loneliness in Older Age
  Chapter  42  Love and Life
  Chapter  43  Finding New Relationships in Later Life
  Chapter  44  Grandparenting is a Perk
  Chapter  45  Water Play: Being Alec's Grama
Part  VIII  Overcoming Obstacles, Living Life to the Fullest
  Chapter  46  Caring and Being Cared For: A Reciprocal Relationship
  Chapter  47  Living in the Real World, Not an Imaginary One
  Chapter  48  Finding Meaning in the Face of Life Difficulties
  Chapter  49  Accepting Help
  Chapter  50  Occupational Therapy and Productive Aging
  Chapter  51  How I Learned to Cope with Depression
  Chapter  52  How Not to Make Mistakes
Part  IX  Work and Retirement
  Chapter  53  The Golden Years: Retirement and the Years That Follow... A Personal Reflection
  Chapter  54  Planning Ahead
  Chapter  55  Aging and Retirement
  Chapter  56  Prospering in Retirement versus Coping with Retirement
  Chapter  57  Once a Writer, Always a Writer
  Chapter  58  A Scientist Retires
Part  X  Housing Options and Solutions
  Chapter  59  Housing for Older Adults … HSL's Communities
  Chapter  60  Why Moving to a Retirement Community Was the Right Choice for Me
  Chapter  61  Living and Learning in a Retirement Community
  Chapter  62  Maintaining Independence: Staying in My Home
  Chapter  63  Treasuring the Past, Enhancing the Future
Part  XI  To Drive or Not to Drive
  Chapter  64  Continuing to Drive Keeps Me Independent
  Chapter  65  We Need to Talk—When is it Time to Hang up the Keys?
Part  XII  Money Matters
  Chapter  66  When Social Security is Not Enough
  Chapter  67  Living Well on a Fixed Income
  Chapter  68  Challenges for Low-Income Seniors: The Not So Golden Years
  Chapter  69  Living on the Edge: The New Economy for Aging Americans
Part  XIII  The Meanings of Success
  Chapter  70  How Does One Achieve a Successful Life?
  Chapter  71  Thoughts on Success and Failure
  Chapter  72  My Thoughts on Success, Developed in Childhood
  Chapter  73  Success Means Having a Positive Impact
  Chapter  74  Passion, Authenticity and Dedication: The Formula for Success
Part  XIV  Finding Fulfillment in Older Age
  Chapter  75  Life's Legacy
  Chapter  76  Still Finding Pleasure after 90
  Chapter  77  Being Passionate About the Things You Love
  Chapter  78  Making Violins, Learning Patience
  Chapter  79  Schubert at Harbor View
  Chapter  80  Art as an Aid to Senior Living
  Chapter  81  All Aboard!
  Chapter  82  Heal Yourself, Heal the World
  Chapter  83  Why Live a Long Life?
Part  XV  Religion, Prayer and Spirituality
  Chapter  84  Aging and Spirituality
  Chapter  85  Religion as a Resource for Comfort in Bereavement
  Chapter  86  Care of the Dying, Deceased and Grieving
  Chapter  87  Looking at Aging from a Catholic Perspective
  Chapter  88  The Value of Prayer, A Christian Perspective and Beyond
  Chapter  89  Is Prayer Helpful in Your Life?
  Chapter  90  Is There an Afterlife?
  Chapter  91  What Is Heaven Like? Does It Exist? Will We Meet our Loved Ones?
Part  XVI  End of Life Issues and Care
  Chapter  92  Coping with Terminal Illness
  Chapter  93  A Meditation on Death and Aging
  Chapter  94  A Time to Speak
  Chapter  95  Leaving Nothing Unfinished in Life and Death
  Chapter  96  Making End-of-Life Decisions
  Chapter  97  Living Fully to the End of Life: The Hospice Choice
  Chapter  98  Old Age... A Mixture of Happy and Sad
  Chapter  99  Death with Dignity
Part  XVII  Coping with Losses
  Chapter  100  Loss of a Spouse: Claire
  Chapter  101  When You Lose a Spouse: Wayne
  Chapter  102  When an Elderly Parent Dies: Impact on Adult Children
  Chapter  103  The Lonelinesses of Long-Distance Elders
Part  XVIII  How Do We Want to be Remembered?
  Chapter  104  Writing Your Own Memoir
  Chapter  105  Remembering Our Loved Ones
  Chapter  106  How Will I Be Remembered?
  Chapter  107  My Generations of Women
  Chapter  108  On Old Age, Friendship and Loss
Part  XIX  Wisdom
  Chapter  109  Mental Health as I Age
  Chapter  110  Sharing Experiences Through Talking
  Chapter  111  Development of a Positive Outlook
  Chapter  112  Words to Live By: Today, Tomorrow, and the Future— My Final Legacy at the Age of 97
Part  XX  Addendum

Irving Silverman

Irving I. Silverman was born in 1920, the son of immigrant parents, and visually handicapped from birth. He attended a special sight conservation class in elementary school, then went on to high school and the City College of New York’s Baruch School of Business, where he majored in Advertising and Publishing.

            Following his graduation from college, Irving began a 45 year career at National Knitwear Association (NKA), a trade association in the knitting industry. But his proudest achievements came in his community service. After the death of his first wife, Henrietta, at the age of 35, he established and led the Long Island chapter of Parents without Partners; and it was through that organization that he met Nancy, his second wife. At age 56, he became President of the New York Region of United Synagogue, the governing body of the Conservative Jewish movement, and in 1980 he led an effort to allow Jews to emigrate from the Soviet Union.

            After retiring from NKA, Irving created the Kosher Food and Jewish Life Expo which “brought kosher out of the closet.” He also indulged his collector instincts by establishing collections of antique printers’ wood type, lighthouse replicas, and giraffe figurines.

            Along with Nancy, Irving vacationed in Maine for almost five decades. Nancy had a lighthouse built on their property and following her death in 2002, Irving designated the lighthouse as a wedding chapel, officiating at 35 wedding ceremonies there.

            Irving’s previous book, A Trilogy . . . Three Hearts . . . One Soul, contains his autobiography and tributes to each of his wives. He now lives at NewBridge on the Charles in Dedham, MA and is 97 years old.

Ellen Beth Siegel, JD, PsyD

Ellen Beth Siegel, JD, Psy.D. is a clinical psychologist and a former lawyer. She is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, Harvard Law School, and William James College (formerly, Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology) and currently serves as a Teaching Associate in Psychology at Harvard Medical School. For many years on staff at Cambridge Health Alliance in Cambridge, MA, she now maintains a private practice with offices in Cambridge and Newton. She is on the Advisory Board of the Endowment for the Advancement of Psychotherapy at Mass. General Hospital and the Alumni Advisory Board of William James College.


Ellen is also a poet. Her poems have been published in Bellowing Ark, The Christian Science Monitor, Concrete Wolf, Poetpourri, and The Warwick Anthology. A nominee for a coveted Pushcart Prize, she is a co-editor of Do Not Give Me Things Unbroken (2002), a poetry anthology, and co-author of Unlocking the Poem (2009), a collection of poetry “assignments” illustrated by selected poems, her own and from 101 other poets. Ellen’s chapbooks Remembering Endymion and The Sweet Moth Kisses Never Traded have been finalists in various chapbook contests and are looking for a publisher; she is also hoping for enough time to put together a full-length volume of her poems.

Ellen lives in Waban, Massachusetts with her husband Don and has three grown children who delight her every single day. She is also Irving Silverman’s daughter.

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ISBN-13: 9781284141733

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