Do you believe that wrinkles or gray hair have value? Strange question, I know. Honestly, I’m in my late 30’s and I unashamedly color my hair a few times a year. I’m among the many women who was “blessed” with the dreaded early grays. I’m reminded of this when I stand over their sink with a $10 bottle of hair dye.
Coloring my hair is a mood-boosting, inexpensive way to promote self-care. I love the shiny, volume-producing results I receive, even if only for a few months. However, this reason was not why I first began coloring. The moment I saw the first gray hair 12 years ago, I actually shrieked, “I’m getting old!” Seriously, my husband will willingly attest to this.
Looking back on this moment, I realize my thoughts and feelings were backward. I did not understand of value of wrinkles or gray hair. Yes, gray hairs and lines around the eyes and forehead often announce signs of aging. But why is that so bad?
The Value Of Wrinkles
I had the wonderful privilege of speaking with author Isabel Tom about her book, The Value of Wrinkles: a young perspective on how loving the old will change your life. God allowed Isabel to personally serve the elderly from the time she was a young child. Growing up in a multi-generational home gave her an up-close and intimate perspective of the wisdom and guidance the elderly blessed us with daily.
Here are some things Isabel talks about in her book and the wisdom she shares with readers.
“We can’t stop aging. We can work hard to offer the best support and environment for it.” – Isabel Tom
Growing up with elderly grandparents in her home, gave Isabel blessings and a wealth of education. However, she honestly confesses that it was often difficult and her attitude was less than pleasant at times. As she grew older, she discovered we can offer something back to the elderly in our lives.
Whether we interact with the elderly in the stores, nursing homes, hospitals, or our own homes, we can value them. Growing older can frustrate the elderly and make them feel less than valuable at times. Shifting our attitudes from our own needs to theirs, allows us to serve them in unbelievable ways.
“Remind your elders of their value. Again. And again…” – Isabel Tom
When we struggle with our attitudes toward the elderly, it’s often because we don’t truly understand them. Taking time to interact with them and make them feel valuable can make them feel loved and bless our hearts at the same time. Isabel mentions a few things we can do that show the elderly we truly see them and care:
- Find out what they want
- Encourage them to make their own choices and help them if needed
- Lend a listening ear – if they don’t want to talk, just sit
- Give them small gifts such a pictures or homemade items
- If they are able, go on walks with them
These are just a few tangible ways to show the elderly people in your life that they truly matter.
“The term ‘old’ and even ‘being old’ is not shameful; rather, old age is honorable and something to be proud of.” – Isabel Tom
Interact With Isabel
Isabel Tom is a writer, speaker, and mom to 3 children. She passionately writes and speaks from the desire to educate today’s culture on the value of loving the elderly. You can read more about Isabel and her ministry here: Isabel Tom.com.