Carol Craig is the Centre's Chief Executive. She is author of The Scots' Crisis of Confidence, Creating Confidence: A Handbook for Professionals Working with Young People, The Tears that Made the Clyde: Well-being in Glasgow and The Great Takeover: How materialism, the media and markets now dominate our lives. She is Commissioning editor for the Postcards from Scotland series. Carol blogs on confidence, well-being, inequality, every day life and some of the great challenges of our time. The views she expresses are her own unless she specifically states that they reflect the Centre's thinking.
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Comment Posted: 12/02/2009 16:17
|None of us has any idea how long the present generation will live and the idea that the first person to live to one thousand has already been born may or may not be true. However, when I listen to the constant whinging of many of my younger acquaintances, I cannot imagine what living longer in such apparent misery will be like.
This train of thought came from thinking of my mother-in-law who died last week at the age of 97. Her father was seriously injured in the First World War and never returned although he did not die until 1919. Her mother (my wife's grandmother) took her family back to Ireland where she had come from and they were subjected to serious abuse from locals because she was in receipt of a British Army War Widow's Pension. After her family returned to Scotland, my mother-in-law met and married my wife's father and had three children. The oldest died aged two and the youngest has Down's Syndrome. My wife, Margaret, is the only one to have lived what might be considered a normal life. Finally my father-in-law died twenty years ago after fighting cancer for more than three years.
You might think this tale is almost like something from Monty Python. What further tragedy can we pile on? And yet, my mother-in-law was one of the happiest women I ever met. Although towards the end her mind had wandered off to its own wee world, she remained a joy to be with. And all this without SEAL, Social Education, psychoanalysys, Prozac, etc. She developed the internal strength to cope with all the misfortunes that life threw at her and taught everyone around her, by example, to try to do the same. The world needs more like her.
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