Loving rocking chairs, front porches, and older people

January 27, 2024

I heard a fellow the other day tell about his daily conversation with his 98-year-old father-in-law who was struggling with dementia.

Each morning, his father-in-law would say, “I can’t find my car keys. Would you mind giving me a ride to work?”

And each morning that son-in-law would reply, “I’m sorry to have to tell you this, but you retired more than 30 years ago.”

“I’ve considered not telling him that,” the son-in-law said, “but my days go so much better when I see the look of sheer joy on his face.”

All of us have experienced some lighter moments with our elderly loved ones. Seeing humor in the things they say and do can help relieve the stress and ease the emotional tension.

God’s word tells us repeatedly we are to lovingly care for our elders and show them the respect they deserve. The fact is, we can be so incredibly blessed by their knowledge and wisdom. If we will take the time to listen, we can learn so many beneficial things.

Leviticus 19:32 tells us we should rise in a show of respect to people with gray hair and that we should honor them. The verse ends with an admonition to fear God. Taken together, we see that passage is a dire warning that God will hold us responsible for disrespecting or mistreating the elderly.

I feel sure laughing at some of their antics is allowed from time to time.

I loved the story of the elderly gentleman who was sitting in his room with a folded towel on top of his head to keep the kangaroos away.

“How is it working?” his caregiver asked.

“It’s working great,” he said. “I haven’t seen one yet.”

On thealzheimersspouse.com website, a woman joked that TV executives have nothing to fear concerning summer reruns at her house. Her husband could watch the same reruns three weeks in a row and thoroughly enjoy them, because he never remembers that he had already seen them.

That same website had a story about an old gentleman who decided to take the dog for a walk. He picked up the leash, walked out the door, and was halfway down the sidewalk before it occurred to him that he had left the dog behind.

That reminded me of the day a few years back when I drove about a half hour to one of my favorite rabbit hunting spots. I got out of the truck, put on my hunter orange, pulled my shotgun from its sheath, filled my pocket with shells, and lowered the tailgate to release my dogs. But I had forgotten the dogs.

Obviously, I’m not far from sitting in my room with a folded towel on my head to keep the kangaroos away.


Reach Roger Alford at (502) 514-6857 or rogeralford1@gmail.com.

phil malicote