intergenerational

Grandma Betty: Why ‘Cute’ Can’t Capture It

Posted on 03/20/2014 by |Volunteering | Comments

Your LifeLet me first say I love what’s going on with Grandma Betty, the Indiana octogenarian turned Instagram star. When Betty was diagnosed with terminal cancer, her great-grandson Zach opened an account (@grandmabetty33) to chronicle her journey. More than 309,000 followers later, what started as a project for friends and family has turned into a worldwide sensation. I just love that the bond between a great-grandmother and her teenage great-grandson, more than 60 years her junior, has inspired an outpouring of …

The Power of Pause: Taking Time to Visit Seniors

Posted on 02/21/2014 by |Volunteering | Comments

Your LifeI’ll admit it: I love a good to-do list. When I’ve got a lot on my plate, or even when I don’t, there’s something so satisfying about crossing things off as I go. But my latest project has been a lesson in letting go of the list. As part of my grad school assistantship, I’m administering cognitive tests to older adults at a care facility near campus. When my adviser, Kate, told me about it, I was excited to jump …

Why Oscar Nominee ‘Nebraska’ Has Already Won

Posted on 01/22/2014 by |Volunteering | Comments

Your LifeI saw Nebraska over the holidays with my boyfriend and his mom and my mom. It was a rather odd double date, come to think of it, but this isn’t about that. The movie just got me to thinking. There’s an important message in Nebraska, particularly in the relationship between David (Will Forte) and his father Woody (Oscar contender Bruce Dern). When Woody says he won a million dollars and has to travel 800+ miles to collect the prize, his …

Having My FaceTime With Arthur

Posted on 11/20/2013 by |Volunteering | Comments

Your LifeI didn’t know what to expect from my long-distance friendship with Arthur — but it wasn’t this. It’s been three months since I moved from Brooklyn, N.Y., to small-town Ohio for grad school. It was tough telling friends I was leaving, especially Arthur, who had come to rely on my Friday visits. Several weeks before the move date, I called our social worker Sasha at DOROT to strategize about how to break the news. “When do you think I should …

Stories to Share: Helping Seniors Write About Their Lives

Posted on 10/23/2013 by |Volunteering | Comments

Your LifeThere was one about a blind date. There was another about keeping kosher, but sneaking BLTs. And then there was one about our family’s store surviving the Great Depression thanks to help from a friend. Sign up for the AARP Health Newsletter Pop Pop used to love telling stories. He was 96 when he passed away last fall, which gave us almost 30 years together. That’s a lot of time to talk—and a lot of time to listen. I feel …

The Beginning of a Beautiful (Long-Distance) Friendship

Posted on 07/23/2013 by |Volunteering | Comments

Your LifeOne Friday last month, I finally broke my news to Arthur. “I have something I need to tell you,” I said, taking a deep breath. “I’m going to graduate school.” “That’s great!” “For gerontology.” “To study old people?” “Yep. And it’s in Ohio.” “Ohio?!” That’s the part I had been nervous about — telling him I’m leaving New York. Apart from his time in the Navy and a year sabbatical in China, Arthur has lived in New York his whole …