“Life is what happens when you are
planning something else.”
Depression in older people is common. Recent stories of suicide cases in Canada among the elderly represent a serious societal issue and a public health crisis in waiting. Studies show that loneliness is a factor that can lead to depression, anxiety, and health problems resulting in older people contributing to an economically crippling burden.
But being old does not have to be that way. It does not have to be lonely or depressing. Through the story of 77-year-old Jaqui Manning-Albert, ‘Sheilaghs Theme’ looks at the positive side of ageing and the vibrancy of older people. When I asked Jaqui what she thinks of dying, she said
“it only takes a few hours to be dying,
up until that point you are active and you
are in the process of living.”
Originally from Cobourg, Jacqui is a music writer, a pianist, an opera singer, a screenplay writer, a novelist, and a mother.
“There is a point where you gel and have an awareness of yourself and you say yes this is me, and you just stay there. That is how you know the difference between you being a spirit and the body being separate. Because when the spirit stays, you as a person stay, no matter how old you get.”
“When I was 35 i felt that I have become myself,
so right now I am just feeling 35 and tired.”
Jaqui believes that women often nurture their creativity after the age of 40 when the kids are older and out of home. She wrote the book Dancing on the Moon at the age of 43. The book turned later into an award winning movie and is based on an epiphany she’s had on a summer vacation when she was 15.
"When you get older you might not be able to do physically all the things you used to do, but you are more than compensated for that by the depth of understanding."