Although I have problems remembering names at the independent living community where I live, I am otherise clear-headed. Should I expect that to change as I age?

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My dad was ninety-three when he died. He was a deacon in the church and had weekly bible studies. His mind was clear as a bell until the cancer took over during his last months.

Our family dynamics had changed, but in spite of everything that happened, I do miss him. I guess it shows more than I am willing to let on. I'm an old lady myself now and if I had it to do all over again, I would not have been so combative with them at times even though his wife was a scheming piece of work. He went along with her plans and separated the family because of it. He really needed her because he could not take care of himself after mom died. If there was anyone I would have wanted for a stepmom, I would have preferred one of the teachers from his vocational school where he taught.
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Reply to Scampie1

The day before my mom died, at age 92, she did the NYT crossword puzzle. Did the anagram puzzle and balanced her checkbook. Took a shower and did her hair. Chatted with my niece and her hubby who were in town. ate a good dinner. To all who say her that day (and in the weeks before) said she was chipper as ever and looking forward to seeing this niece, who lives 1000 miles away.

She got up the next morning, and we guess, decided to go back to bed. She laid down and quietly died.

Sometimes her thinking was a little skewed, but, criminy, she had SO MANY people in her life. She wasn't as sharp as she was in her 50's or 60's--but she kept 'all her marbles'.

She kept busy and took the good with the bad. Nobody knows how we'll age--and the forgetfulness? I can't remember the names of all the people I've met. That's just showing you've led a full life, when you have people you can 'forget' but still 'know'. I get away with that by calling people "Honey".
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Reply to Midkid58
Daughterof1930 May 30, 2024
Your mother had what I’d call a “good death” What a blessing!
My mother is 99 with advanced dementia. One of her best friends (same age) is sharp as ever! Tremendous memory, ideas and insights. I’m sure we’ll all fall somewhere between those two extremes.

Simplify, plan ahead and get your ducks in a row. Just in case.
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Reply to Anabanana
NeedHelpWithMom May 30, 2024

I had a cousin (she died not long ago) who lived to be 101, who was extremely sharp and very active!
Aging is individual. I know 2 men who lived to 102 and lived alone almost to the end. A Church Lady who lived in an upstairs apartment who was driving and still active at 93 when she passed. Her daughter found her in her apt. I think its mind over matter.

Some people complain about every ache and pain and are unhappy because of expectations. Others, you have no idea the pain they are in, they have no expectations so are happy with what comes their way.

I don't do change well. Eventually, I am OK. I am 74 my husband 77. Two single daughters 38 and 46. At 85 they will be in their 50s. I so hope our health is still good at 85 and 88 but life happens. I hope we have invested enough to afford an AL. Because I do not want my girls caring for us. Be there for us yes, care for us no. I am already in the mindset that we eventually will need to move. No, aging in place or we want to keep Mom. in her home as long as possible. Its all attitude.

By the way at 74 I forget names. I do better writing them down. I remember them better.
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Reply to JoAnn29

I'm 87+ and still think clearly (IMO). I hope that doesn't change, but I realize that it could if I get much older. I maintain the household for myself and my 94 Y/O husband, grocery shop, water the plants, pay bills--the usual stuff. It sometimes takes me a few minutes to recall a specific name or event, but I usually can. (Google is a great resource when I just can't summon the info.) I follow current events and read a lot. I had to give up volunteering at a cat rescue/rehoming organization due to physical infirmity, and I miss it.
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Reply to ElizabethAR37

SUNNYSHULKIN: Perhaps no mortal person can hazard a guess to one's future self. Taking care of yourself and staying on top of health issues is paramount.
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Reply to Llamalover47

Great question!

Unfortunately, no one on a forum knows the answer to your question.

I wish we could prevent all problems that go along with aging. Sadly, we can’t.

All you can do is to keep up with doctor appointments and be completely honest about your situation.

Express any concerns you have with your doctor. They can assess your situation by doing further testing.

Pay attention to what others see. They may see things differently than you do.
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Reply to NeedHelpWithMom

Sunny, your profile says you have hearing loss... do you use hearing aids? If not I highly recommend you invest in them. Hearing loss can be very isolating, and you have no idea what you're missing until your hearing gets corrected. If you already have hearing aids, that's one thing off your checklist.

Also, we have less control over cognitive decline than we'd like to believe. Some forms are inherited and totally unavoidable, no matter how carefully we live. Some is caused by strokes (TIAs), which no one can predict. How do you know you are "clear headed"? Did you have any testing done? An objective medical opinion (and baseline measurement) will tell the accurate story. Medicare covers an annual wellness exam every year so there's no excuse to not get tested. If you've done this (and continue to do it), then another item is checked off.

Does your IL community have a continuum of care so that you can easily transition from one level of care to the next? Are most of your bills on AutoPay? Etc.

Finally, do you have all your legal ducks in a row? All the legal protections and pre-made decisions for when things get tougher? Do you have a PoA assigned (younger, local, reliable, willing)? An Advance Healthcare Directive? A Pre-need Guardian choice? A Last Will? Or a trust?

The most important piece is finding a PoA for yourself.
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Reply to Geaton777

Id say just keep doing what your doing, because it sounds like your doing good. Advoid insomnia, and do age related exercises.
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Reply to Anxietynacy

Plan for the worse. Hope for the best.
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Reply to Geaton777

I think (unfairly) we will all have our work cut out for us to still be heard the same when we are very old.

When the young things see us as 'invisible', a 'cute little thing' or a 'bossy ornery old thing'.

Stand & fight against this prejudice against old age I say!
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Reply to Beatty

Having memory issues or staying “clear headed” varies just as anything else does. Younger people can be handed the sadness of dementia and others can live long lives without it ever touching them. Congratulations on doing so well thus far. Keeping active and challenging yourself with activities you enjoy will be a big help toward keeping you going
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Reply to Daughterof1930

Wouldn't waste a whole lot of thought on this, because when you don't know you won't know you don't know.
If you know what I mean?
Good luck to you!
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Reply to AlvaDeer

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