My dad had a saying when he was trying to fix things around the house. He was a wonderful man, let there be no question. But when it came to being a “handy-man” — not so much. When he would finish a project, no matter how big or how small, he would finish with this phrase — which was used over and over again by many of his friends [and now, his son] — “It’s not like it was, but it will work.”

Duct tape has saved many a marriage. I know this for a fact. Elmer’s Glue has saved many a school project. Again, I speak from experience. There is a time and a place for using duct tape or glue. But when it comes to our personal well-being, best to see a professional.

It’s one thing to try to replace the hinges on a cupboard door. It’s another to diagnose whether or not you have a cold or double pneumonia.

Last month, we visited a senior center where the staff practiced something called “Namaste.” I don’t know all the details about the practice, but I will tell you this. It involves the senses of touch, sound and smell. Seniors, many of them with dementia, were obviously connected to the practitioners during the practice of Namaste.

This brings us back to my original statement. “It’s not like it was, but it will work.” As we age, we may look for many ways to feel better. It may be traditional western medicine, it may be medicine involving our native culture, it may be something like Namaste. But the important thing is — talk to a professional. Find out what he/she has to say about what ails you. The answer may be simple — it may be complex. But don’t try to fix it yourself without help. There’s a reason those healers have worked to become who they are. The answer you don’t want to hear is, “It’s not like it was, but it will work.”


 

The Elderhood Project airs on KHON2 Friday morning news at 5:45 a.m. and Thursday news at 5 p.m.

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