Stepping Back. Finding a Better Way to Grow Old.

Stepping Back. Finding a Better Way to Grow Old.
By Bill Thomas, M.D.

We live in a time when enough is never quite enough. Our culture is out of balance. There is a profound and growing need for a slower, deeper and more connected approach to our lives, our work and our communities, especially as we grow older. I am part of a movement doing something to change all of this.

Life can and should be reimagined. New ways of living and working are waiting to be discovered on the far side of adulthood.

I am a physician, a writer and an author of “Second Wind: Navigating the Passage to a Slower, Deeper and More Connected Life,” a book that examines the baby boomer generation’s reluctant second coming of age. I am also currently visiting 25 cities, including the metropolitan Detroit and Ypsilanti areas, to offer audiences powerful insights into more deliberate ways of living and working through special live theater performances. Joining me is renowned consumer health expert and TV personality Dr. Janet Taylor and other national and local experts who are making a difference especially in the care of the elderly, including Diane Zide from Botsford Commons Senior Community and Jamey Baker from Community EMS/Parastar.

I invite you to attend one of the Second Wind Tour stops in Michigan. The half-day performances will be held at the Royal Oak Music Theater in Royal Oak on Wednesday, May 7, and in Ypsilanti at Pease Auditorium at Eastern Michigan University on Thursday, May 8. Both presentations run from 1 to 5 p.m. and are free and open to the public. To attend, register at secondwindtour.org.

I have been influencing change in the care of the elderly for many years by promoting change in medicine and society. I am the founder of a radical approach to long-term care that is coming to Detroit through Presbyterian Village of Michigan and the Green House Project this year in downtown on the Detroit riverfront. I am also assisting Botsford Health Care to transform acute care services for the elderly through a unique TeleMed program with Community EMS, Botsford Hospital, Botsford Commons Senior Living Community and other area nursing care facilities. A future project with Community EMS to redesign emergency transportation vehicles to be more user-friendly to the elderly is also in the works.

I am most grateful to the coalition of national and local sponsors who share my vision for helping people. Local sponsors are Botsford Health Care, including Botsford Hospital, Botsford Commons Senior Community and Community EMS, as well as Presbyterian Villages of Michigan. National sponsors include AARP, Merrill Lynch and Capital Impact Partners.

I hope you’ll join me in a deeper investigation of life and living that can reveal the hidden virtues of age. Outgrowing adulthood is worthwhile, because it can lead us toward slower, deeper and more connected ways of living.

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