Loneliness is one of the worst epidemics within the elderly population of today. It is not a disease but it’s effects are killing many. The most common one is depression.
For many years I volunteered to visit the elderly as part of Pastoral Home care ministry. Unfortunately I became sick and had to stop. It it terribly sad to see all these people who were once productive members of our society being left to fend for themselves in their old age.
In some first world countries relatives don’t have the time or desire to care for their loved ones and send them to a place to be taken care of by others.
These homes are very lonely and impersonal. Most of the residents are not able to get around by themselves, they are confined to wheelchairs or are dependent of others for mobility. Most of the time they are alone in their rooms or in bed. Personnel is limited and can’t supply the necessary and desperately needed accompaniment.
In my case I have been frequently isolated because of medical issues. I live with my husband who’s very helpful. I have also prepared myself spiritually and practice contemplation and meditation. God has kept me company through my difficulties and I find solace in silence. Solitude has become a way of life.
If you have the time to visit someone in your neighbourhoods that lives alone, or visit residences at least once a month, I assure you you will be doing a wonderful service to the community. There are places where you can register to do this kind of stuff.
Let’s remember that some day it might be us in these places. Let’s pay it forward… I assure you your reward will be immense.
Love and Peace