Thursday, April 16, 2020

What to Do (Eleanor and Joan)

Everyone's experience with the lockdowns, quarantines, and stay-at-home orders is different. Some people are sluggish, some people are anxious, some people are depressed, some people are calm until they start worrying if they're too calm, and some people can't even stay at home. However, this isn't the only crisis we've been through in our lives, and it can help to look back on other stories of disaster or confusion to see what kept people going. With that in mind, I've included two stories of older buds and how they got through their crises:

Eleanor Kazdan

                  My mother Judith was always eccentric and difficult to get along with. She also cried a lot when I was a child.  I realized when I was older that she suffered from depression.  Our family was a hotbed of arguing and yelling.  My mother was never happy or satisfied.
                  When my mother was 47, she and my father met my brothers’ high school athletic coach, Sy Mah.  He had a radical idea that adults should get in shape by running. 
Both of my parents began running.  The year was 1967.  People stared at them on the street and made rude comments.  I remember that my mother went from hardly being able to run around the block to running a mile.  Then 2, 5, 10 miles.  Then running a marathon.  And another marathon.
She was no longer depressed.  Running became her life.  Training, running 6 miles a day, mentoring other older runners.  There were many awards, trophies, and magazine articles. 
Judith ran 37 marathons all over the world until she was 80. 
She was a great inspiration to me and many others!

Joan Bunting
The Best Things I Learned In My Life

                  In my lifetime I’ve learned many things.

                  For instance I’ve learned to do unto others as I would like others to treat me. I’ve also learned to be respectful and considerate of others.  I was taught how to carry myself as a lady, love my enemies even though it can be very, very hard to love someone who has hurt you.

                  I’ve also learned to share even if I only have a little or its my last.  How to be a good listener, that’s how you learn.  Also everyone is not your friend.

                  I’m still learning how to keep my mouth shut sometimes, because when I’m trying to tell someone a truth about something and they’re not able to accept the truth, I’m accused of being a little know it all.

                  Sometimes when I’m talking I have to explain every small detail.  I’ve always been a talker around those I feel comfortable with. 

                  But to make a long story short, I’ve learned to love --- my creator with all my heart, mind and soul. 

                  One of my biggest lessons I’ve learned in this life is, to just at all times, to be myself.

If you're feeling frustrated and uncertain about how to deal with this crisis, try asking an older bud for advice. They've been through a lot and they've picked up some tips in the process. If you can't be there in person, please call them, email them, or message them on social media. And if they're using teleconferencing or remote events for the first time, give them a call and help them set things up. Check in on them to see how well they're getting used to these programs. You can share your older buds' stories through our portal right here, and you can volunteer as a transcriber (completely remotely) by emailing us at If you're an older bud yourself, you can share your story through this portal right here. And if you're just plain passionate about supporting older buds and ending senior isolation, then like us on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter, and share links to your favorite stories. And check us out on 6ABC news, too! Thanks for reading.

Curated by Caitlin Cieri