May 31, 2013

La Tata & the UHF America’s Health Rankings Senior Report

*This is part of a sponsored campaign with Latina Mom Bloggers and United Health Foundation, pero como siempre- as always, the story and expressed opinions are BB's.  

HolaHolaHola My Beautifuls!

Do you remember my post about the S Sisters? Bueno, they've once again danced into BB's life joining my grandmother, La Tata and my Hispanicize friends United Health Care .  Thankfully she's back home and for being 90 or 92 she's doing remarkably well, however the scare did prompt me to read the UHF America's Health Rankings Senior Report more diligently than I would have otherwise and I found many points in it valid and part of our daily lives with La Tata. Go ahead and click on the link- excellent information in there.

In the report they mention tobacco use, inactivity, alcohol consumption, and poor diet, as some of the contributing factors in bad health in seniors.  Here we are lucky, La Tata rarely smoked, and though she does like her wine from time to time and I have to challenge her to walk a little more, as I mentioned, she's remarkably well for her age, and as far as poor diet... please, she's Cubana.  So on those counts we're doing well. There is one area however where Babushka must battle daily with her, and it's one topic Latinos don't speak of too often and I think that may be part of the problem.

Having been one of 12 children, an entrepreneur, a world traveler, La Tata was not ready to live a slower and more isolated life.  As in most modern households, everyone has work or studies outside the home and La Tata would find herself alone for more hours as the years went by; she fell into a heavy depression.  To say BB was scared and saddened when I saw her like this a year ago is an understatement.  It's not age that makes the old act old, it's the frustration of not being able to do what they used to do, which then turns to feelings of helplessness and being unneeded.  They lose social contact because of embarassment - in La Tata's case she doesn't like to go to parties because she wouldn't want to show up in "old lady shoes" which are the only ones that she's comfortable in.  How do we combat this?

As a family we make sure to call her daily, visit at least weekly, and make sure she knows she's still a very valued and special part of our lives.  Of course having the great,great grandchildren give her giant hugs and kisses over the phone lights up her disposition instantly.

Taking her out works wonders too.  
Nobody likes to be cooped up in the house all the time and in La Tata's case, the louder and more festive the place, the better it is.  
For some unexplicable reason she's always in better spirits and health when she's "de Farandula". 

Cuba Nostalgia- she ♥♥♥ this! 

Special Occasions
Memorial Day & with her son going out to eat for her birthday

Let them Lead and be who they used to be.

La Tata leading the way to do some grocery shopping,
getting a perm and then her nails done.

Make sure they laugh at least one good belly laugh a day.

How'd you think I came up with JU SO FONII !!!??

Show them they're needed, vital and still useful.

La Tata will show me how to play Spanish Cards and help me w/my Spanish whilst I read outloud.
Note: To counteract all the news, programas escandalosas, y novelas, I pick a book with positive affirmations/messages.

But most of all, show them they are loved and not alone.

Rinquincaya "loaning" his best friend to La Tata so she wouldn't have to be alone and afraid in the hospital. 

 From the report:  "Older Hispanics (28.2%) were less likely to rate their health as excellent or very good than were older Whites (42.8%) or Older Asians (35.3%) 

Hispanic older adults are expected to become the largest/ethnic minority of those aged 65 or older by 2019.

Now is a critical time to study senior health at the population level because we know that America's senior population will grow by more than 50% in the next 15 years and that Americans are living longer but sicker lives."

Bueno, I don't know about the stats, or the other Older Hispanics, but if La Tata lives to 2019 we will be blessed, and if she lives another 15 years- 
Babushka's bottling up her DNA!!

; )

Enjoy your elders now, help them and you live longer, more productive and enjoyable lives.
The memories & love never grow old.

Babushka Besos a todos.  Cuidensen.

*This is part of a sponsored campaign with Latina Mom Bloggers and United Health Foundation, pero expressed opinions are BB's. 

Bohemian Babushka
Bohemian Babushka

Groovy Spanglish speaking Grandma of 6 who loves life and all its adventures. Motivational while still keeping it real, Babushka shows how all things looked at with gratitude are good, and how to say to la vida- JU SO FONII!!!