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The Kind of 85-year Old That I want To Be


This essay assignment (3-4 pages) encourages you to consider factors that may affect your experience of aging. You will write an essay that answers the question: What kind of 85-year old do you want to be? You will be using material from class lectures and the textbook. This exercise assesses critical thinking, inquiry-based learning, and inter-relations among disciplines. Use this book as a source:
Hooyman, N. R., & Kiyak, H. A. (2010). Social Gerontology, (9th ed.). Boston, MA: Allyn & Bacon. ISBN-10: 0-205-76835-0 ISBN-13: 978-0-205-76313-9

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Population aging has been one of the most noticeable social transformations of the century. Recently, it has been established that the number of people aged 65 years and above now surpasses those aged between 12 and 24 years in America.  The number of aged persons has also been on the increase in Asian countries such as Indonesia and China. Soon it is expected that the number of older people in the world could be more than that of children, with the number of the very old people increasing greatly (, par.6).

At 85 years old, I would want to be a little different from the current aged persons. Currently, an increasing number of frail old persons are being pushed by the society into needing safe and effective care. However, there is much that still remains to be done in order to improve the quality of cares services in the country.  In order to remain relevant to the society today, one has to remain economically productive. In addition one has to be physically healthy.  These factors are unavoidable if I want to lead a helpful life in my old age (Griffin, par 9).

I would not like to be a much dependent old person in future. It is possible to earn a living in the old age through participating actively in the economy of the society through less energy-demanding work. Assisting with child care would be a perfect example. Utilization of my energy in old age in the right way would enable me to not only have fun but also live a life that is healthy (Hooyman, N., & Kiyak, H, par. 11)

As a matter of fact interacting regularly on social basis as well as engaging in some fun activities such as games and regular exercises help prevent muscle and joint pains as well as depression.  With aging there will be inevitable change of skin. The skin will probably become wrinkled, tougher and age-spots developing. At this age my hair will mostly be gray. Though all these changes will eventually set in, it is necessary to maintain a state of complete social, mental as well as physical well-being.  Of the seven leading causes of death among old people in America, six are chronic diseases. Normally, these chronic diseases are long term and are rarely cured, but can be prevented with changes in behavior. Therefore, I would adopt a healthy lifestyle in order to achieve a better quality of life so as to maintain a high general rate of good health (Junal, par. 9).

At the age of 85, I would like to retain my high ability to recall. Though intelligence and learning declines as one grows old, I would wish that I continue to learn and recall most of the things. This would particularly be possible because there are many gains and losses in cognitive function as age sets in. I would employ all strategies available to delay decline in memory, learning and intelligence or to compensate for the losses.

In old age, I would like to remain calm, free from negative feelings, emotionally stable and less easily upset.  I would like to be equally involved in the social world through seeking the company of others. I would encourage positive emotions in my thinking. I would also prefer what is straightforward, plain and simple compared to what is subtle, complex and ambiguous.