Losing a long-term spouse can be deadly, studies show
The recent death of Prince Phillip has raised concern about Queen Elizabeth:
Known as stress-induced cardiomyopathy, “broken heart” syndrome is a documented medical condition.
Another possible complication for people facing bereavement is the widowhood effect:
The risk of an elderly man or woman dying from any cause increases between 30% and 90% in the first three months after a spouse’s death, then drops to about 15% in the months that follow. The widowhood effect has been documented in all ages and races around the world.
This article from CNN provides advice for people facing bereavement.
He’s a cop. He’s 91. And he has no plans to retire
Here’s another article from CNN. This one profiles L.C. “Buckshot” Smith of Camden, Arkansas. Now 91, Smith has worked in law enforcement for more than 56 years.
He tried retiring once but “quickly realized he missed the work.”
What happens to our cognition in the darkest depths of winter?
You’ve probably heard of season affective disorder (SAD), a form of depression caused by the reduction of sunlight during the short days of winter. Here Tim Brennan, professor of psychology at the University of Oslo in Norway, discusses both his own and other scientists’ research into the question of what he calls human seasonality, or “the psychological effects of extreme swings in the physical environment.”
“A particular challenge when studying human seasonality is that the widespread belief about mental sluggishness in winter tends unjustifiably to seep into the science,” Brennan writes. However, his research lead him to the conclusion that “there really isn’t evidence of much difference between summer and winter in our thinking, memory and attention.”
Our book critic pays homage to Beverly Cleary, whose characters played a key role in so many of our childhoods
Moira Macdonald, arts critic for the Seattle Times, celebrates the life of children’s author Beverly Cleary, who died recently at the age of 104. “For so many of us, Ramona and Beezus and Henry Huggins and Ellen Tebbits and Otis Spofford were friends, keeping us company during the strange journey of growing up.”
For some Seattle-area residents with COVID vaccines, ‘re-entry anxiety’ is real
Since my husband and I have been “fully vaccinated” for some weeks now, I’ve been watching with interest how people like us are approaching the return to social interaction. In fact, I find the term “fully vaccinated” in itself interesting, since the reality used to be that you were either vaccinated or you weren’t.
Although this article focuses on people in the Seattle area, my guess is that the individuals described here are pretty representative of people of the same demographic everywhere. And I especially resonate with the experience of one woman in the article, who discovered “Reentry anxiety is a real thing.”
How About You?
If you’ve been vaccinated and are returning to society, I’d be interested in hearing what your experience has been.
- Are you starting to get back into activities that were suspended during the pandemic?
- Do you have concerns about how safe such a return to society is right now?
© 2021 by Mary Daniels Brown