Keeping in Touch with Old Friends

Jacqueline Marcell Health Guide
  • I have been having a ball entertaining out-of-town guests–my best friend since first grade, Linda, and her 23 year-old daughter, Kathleen, my darling "niece." Even though we don’t get to spend time together often, we always just pick up and go on as if no time has passed. The history is so deep there’s never a lull in the conversation, and as references to our many shared experiences surface there are constant smiles and giggles. I haven’t laughed so hard in ages and I will miss them terribly when they leave. I can’t imagine not having them in my life.

    I remember my aging parents lamenting with great sorrow as their dear life-long friends and older family members started to get sick and pass away. I always felt so bad for my sweet mother when the middle-of-the-night phone call came and I could hear her crying. When she’d read us the bad news letter, she’d have a hard time finishing–stopping frequently to sob her heart out.
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    I always encouraged my parents to make new friends when they retired and moved, but they said it was pretty hard to do at their ages because of everyone’s medical problems. Dad would say, "Honey, there’s nothing like your old friends, never lose touch. You’ll see."

    Years later, while I was a caring for my parents, I found their old dilapidated phone book and decided to call everyone from A-Z so they could chat with anyone who was left. It was always a joy for them, and even or me, because as their long-lost memories surfaced–I heard some pretty interesting stories and gained some valuable insight about their younger years.

    Try to imagine yourself being elderly, suffering with ill health and unable to even use the phone to connect with those you have cared for in your life. And if you are caring for an elder now, realize how comforting it would be for them to hear familiar voices and be able to reminisce with old friends they’ve lost touch with. It’s a simple thing you can do to make them happy, and hey, plan for good Karma–because hopefully someone will extend this kindness to you someday!

    Share your thoughts about keeping in touch with friends in the message boards.

    Find more information about Alzheimer's disease and treatment.

    You can learn more about Jacqueline and find information about her book at
Published On: September 08, 2006