Aging Well February 4th 2014

Maybe it’s the weeks without seeing the sun, or the chilly days cooped up inside, or the late sunrises and early sunsets, but it is easy to get down during these cold grey days of winter in The Dalles.  
And if you do get the “wintertime” blues, you may try to “just get over it” as your parents use to tell you when you broke up with your first puppy love in junior high. Or you may try writing a gratitude list or start watching comedies to perk yourself up.
And if still all your self-remedies are not working: you have lost interest or pleasure in activities; are irritable, tired and have feelings of worthlessness, guilt, and hopelessness. And you feel you have been stuck in your sadness or grief for too long, you may be suffering from depression.
Andrew Soloman, who wrote the award winning book The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression, describes his own depression as the opposite of vitality. In 1994, three years after a series of personal losses things changed for him. He no longer wanted to do the things he regularly did and he didn’t know why. He knew his reactions were ridiculous but he couldn’t do anything about it. And through his emotional horror he saw depression as “… much, much too much sadness, much too much grief at far too slight a cause.”
Depression affects fifteen in every one hundred adults over 65 – of which 70% are women. It is a serious illness that should not be confused with sadness and grief which we all experience at different times of our lives. Depression is nothing to be ashamed of or to hide from. And it is not a natural part of aging! But most importantly it is treatable. If you feel you may have depression, talk to your health care provider to find help so you can climb out of the emotional abyss of depression and live a fuller and happier life.
Walking is an activity most anyone can do, offers a multitude of health benefits and most importantly – it’s cheap! But as we walk to improve our stamina, mobility and balance, we should also be aware of the dangers of falling. On Tuesday February 11th at 11:00, Ann Stanley and Linda Alexander from Columbia Gorge Spine and Sports Medicine will discuss the benefits of walking and how to prevent falls as we get older.
Two reminders: Don’t forget to have your Passport to Happiness passport stamped at the StrongWomen’s table during the Go Red for Women’s Heart Expo at The Civic Auditorium on Friday from 11:00 am – 2:00 pm. And if you are one of the millions who own an Apple iPad (or an iPhone) join us at the Center on Wednesday, February 5th from 1:00 – 2:30 PM to learn more about the many ways to use your new device.  .
Now that you are fluent in the new Euro-English spelling, I’ll use it one more time for the Center’s music announcement. Tusday night on February 11th Martin and Friends vil be performing for yur dansing and listning pleasur.  Ze dors opn at 6:00, musik starts at 7:00 and ze fun nds at 9:00. (And to se if yu ar stil reading zis, if yu ar ze first to email me or kal the Senter, you’l reseive ten fre quilt rafle tikets.) And I mustn’t forget …everyon is velkom and donations ar apresiated.
English grammar can be a cruel mistress. You forget one verb, a punctuation mark and confusion breaks out! It was pointed out to me that last week I forgot to include “was” and a question mark. The sentence should have read “… the popular television show “Candid Camera” which ran on NBC from 1960-1967 was hosted by what television personality?” which explains why only Sandy Haechrel emailed the correct answer: Allen Funt.
But this week’s “Remember When” question is inspired by the Seahawks dominant (and boring?) victory in Sunday’s Super Bowl. After their win, the team took home the Super Bowl trophy named after Vince Lombardi who coached what team to the first two Super Bowl victories? E-mail your answer to, call 541-296-4788 or send it with a “cheesehead” hat first worn in 1987.
Well, it has been another week enjoying the rollercoaster of life’s ups and downs. Until we meet again, as Vivian Greene wrote “Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass—it’s about learning to dance in the rain!”

“Sometimes I get the feeling the whole world is against me, but deep down I know that’s not true. Some smaller countries are neutral.”—Robert Orben

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