A Journey Called Aging : Challenges and Opportunities in Older Adulthood book cover
1st Edition

A Journey Called Aging
Challenges and Opportunities in Older Adulthood

ISBN 9780789033840
Published November 6, 2007 by Routledge
248 Pages

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Book Description

A Journey Called Aging presents an insightful exploration of the years between the entry into older adulthood and death. This text examines the significant changes and major landmarks of older persons between 60 and 90. Grounded by a developmental framework based on empirical research, this book presents a new way of looking at older adulthood, describing the older adult years in intensely human terms through both anecdotes and research-based findings to engage the reader as both guide and traveler.

Using a series of sequential stages as a framework, A Journey Called Aging discusses the experiences of older adults addressing the challenges and opportunities presented at each stage. This clear analysis can be used as a guide to help persons plan their own odyssey through the older years.

Topics in A Journey Called Aging include:

  • research and results of the study
  • entering older adulthood
  • the long stable stage of Extended Middle Age
  • Early Transition
  • Older Adult Lifestyle
  • Later Transition
  • the stable stage near the end of life
  • the final transition

A Journey Called Aging is crucial reading for professionals who work with older adults, including pastors, attorneys, facilities managers, and program directors; gerontology educators and students; and older adults themselves, their families, and those who care for and about them.

Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction
  • Audience
  • Individual Experience of Age
  • Overview
  • Chapter 1. Mapping the Journey
  • Landmarks on the Road Ahead
  • The Research
  • The Tasks on the Road Ahead
  • Conclusion
  • Chapter 2. Entering Older Adulthood
  • Retirement
  • Time of Retirement
  • Postretirement Employment
  • Retirement Variations
  • Other Gateways
  • What About Homemakers?
  • The Core
  • Moving Out, Letting Go
  • The Challenge of Looking Ahead
  • Chapter 3. Extended Middle Age
  • Length of Days
  • Giving Time New Meaning
  • A Season in Search of a Purpose
  • A Substitute for Work
  • Middle-Aged Forever
  • Relationships and Solitude
  • Aloneness and Independence
  • Balancing Gains and Losses
  • The Role of Helping Professions
  • Chapter 4. The Early Transition
  • Voluntary and Involuntary Approaches
  • Betwixt and Between
  • Naming the Realities
  • Consequence of an Illness
  • Death and Loss in Later Life
  • Loss and Recovery
  • Meaning and Relationships
  • Growth in Recovery
  • Differences and Similarities
  • Preparing for the Early Transition
  • Chapter 5. An Older Adult Lifestyle
  • Who Survived?
  • Reinventing the Self
  • The Others in Life
  • Freedom
  • Purposes and Priorities
  • Old Age Is Not for Sissies
  • Chapter 6. The Later Transition
  • The Role of Professionals and Support Persons
  • Beginning the Journey
  • Timing the Transition
  • The Journey to Care
  • Chapter 7. While the Light Lasts
  • The Environment of Care
  • The Challenge for the Professional
  • Being Okay Amid Dependency and Frailty
  • The Blessing of Care
  • Engaging and Disengaging
  • Is Autonomy a Contradiction?
  • What’s the Point?
  • Journeying On
  • Chapter 8. Dying Well
  • The Beginning
  • The Medicalization of Dying
  • The Professional and the Process of Dying
  • Landmarks and Developmental Tasks of Dying
  • Dying and Relationships
  • Dying and Meaning
  • Preparation
  • The Need to Improve Care at the End of Life
  • Epilogue. Prevailing: A Challenge and a Vision
  • References
  • Index

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James C. Fisher, Henry C. Simmons