“Prim” The Healer

When we first met Prim a year ago in Seattle, she was as lovable and kind as a furry loved one could be. After a curious and briefly hesitant look, she jumped on my lap right away.

She looked at me close up, licking my face like a popsicle. I knew then how much love this little girl would bring to our family.

Prim came to our home not too long before Skai crossed the Rainbow Bridge. She attached herself to big bro right away. She never left his side.

Skai showed Prim the ropes around the house. “Don’t poop in the house,” Skai reminded Prim as she was trained to see the door first.

But Prim still liked to poop on the stairs near the bottom. Skai didn’t get that, though.

Both siblings played as long as Skai could hold up. Prim never wanted to stop playing. She worried about Skai. But she always let her bro rest. And never left his side.

Skai seemed excited and grateful right away. Prim helped her bro feel safe when he needed it the most.

Prim helped mom and pops too, when they were sad. Skai got really sick and couldn’t move around much anymore.

Our furry loved ones are healers. They know when we are happy or sad.

The furry ones never leave our hearts and souls. They watch from high above and whisper in our ears…

“It’s gonna be okay…”

Thank you, Sarah and Chris, for sharing Prim and Skai with us…

Mental Health First Aid for Seniors and Loved Ones…

Mental Health First Aid for Older Adults  from NYC Health…City of New York

Go to…Mental Health First Aid 8 hour training…  The Mental Health First Aid USA for Older Adults curriculum is primarily focused on information participants can use to help adults ages 65 and over.

I didn’t know until being certified as a Mental Health First Aid Adult Trainer in 2016 that mental health and depression in older adults is often ignored or dismissed. I also didn’t know that among the elderly population, aging white males commit suicide in America at a 98% higher rate than all others.  I was actually shocked at first but now understand (Colorado State University report). “In the United States, older men of European descent (so-called white men) have significantly higher suicide rates than any other demographic group. For example, their suicide rates are significantly higher than those of older men of African, Latino or Indigenous descent, as well as relative to older women across ethnicities.”

Depression is the culprit, especially for those who have difficulty being as opposed to doing.  I consider myself in the category of an older white male who loves living in the moment or being, but also thrives in doing the things I care about.  

When my own retirement became a reality, it was very tough to find the the new chapter of doing something that provided me with the same ego fulfilling experience as did my long corporate and business career.  I found after experimenting with volunteer work in the community and public service that making a difference for others gave me the balance needed to thrive and preserve a healthy mind and body.  

We older Americans, by choice, can map out our lives by being ourselves in the context of all we care about, including pursuing professional and vocational outlets for continued growth and personal rewards.  

We can also take in the romance and adventure offered in life by fulfilling your bucket list of the amazing places to visit and explore around the globe or at home.  There are so many things to do as we age, assuming our good health is maintained.

For me, getting older is a privilege…many never see the morning sun of old age.  We owe to ourselves and others to show the way with our wisdom until the very last day of our lives…

Judy and Steve Sparks, Children and Family Advocates…