by Don Ingwerson
May is Older Americans Month! Throughout the year there are many weeks and months being celebrated for various reasons, but this particular tribute – to seniors – caught my attention because I have written about longevity and how it is tied to spirituality. Spiritual qualities like love, perseverance, and altruism show through clearly in the many contributions seniors have made to society. In Older American Month: Deconstructing the Stereotype, the author gives examples of some women who made significant contributions in their later years. And the first person that she mentioned was Mary Baker Eddy:
“So many women much older than 65 have accomplished so much, and they didn’t do it from a nursing home. Mary Baker Eddy was 86 when she founded the Christian Science Monitor. Susan B. Anthony was in her 80s when she founded the International Woman Suffrage Alliance.
Folk artist Anna Mary Robertson Moses was an uneducated farm woman who began painting when her arthritic hands could no longer hold an embroidery needle. Grandma Moses first took up a brush at the age of 76 and painted nearly till her death at 101.
Doris Haddock (Granny D), who in 1999, at the age of 89, began walking the 3,200 miles between Los Angeles and Washington, DC, raised awareness of the need for campaign finance reform.
These are a few pieces of history we know, but each of us has our personal heroines, women we admire for their grace and grit, many of whom have gone where no modern woman can even imagine going.”