May is Older American’s Month. This month’s national theme is “Age Out Loud.”
Why is this important for everyone to be aware? Because everyone is aging. You are literally getting a little bit older every day, so you should care about those who are ahead of you. If you are lucky, you’ll get to be that old one day.
Why else is this important? We all need to remember to share our voice and our stories as we get through this thing called life. Getting older can allow for perspective, and it’s a perspective that we younger people should seek out. To learn from those who have been through more life than us. To learn about history not just through books (but yes, keep reading, too) but from the people who lived through those times. To help us understand that we are connected by so many of life’s experiences and we are not alone. And of course, to hear stories of others who have lived lives very different from our own. To create more awareness and to create space for those to share. To share and create meaning – and to share and create connections, person-to-person.
So whether you are participating in an Older American’s Month celebration or just take some time to talk with an older adult in your life, I implore you to intentionally carve out a little time this month and read, write, share, or listen to the life stories of those around you.
The act of caring by asking someone about their life and the time to actually listen can be a powerful thing.