That’s for the Birds

By Ron Tatro, Vice President at Elder Law of Michigan
My family’s home is in the country and we are surrounded by nature. Deer, turkeys, coyotes, and sandhill cranes roam the fields. Our back yard is home to countless species of birds. They range from large birds such as hawks and eagles to doves, cardinals, and songbirds. For me, they are a reminder of the changing seasons. With winter approaching, some birds migrate while others prepare for the cold weather ahead.
I wonder how prepared we are for the changing seasons of time and life. Here are some things to think about:

  • Do we take care of our health? The frequency of medical appointments seems to increase as we age, but normally they contribute to a better quality of life. I don’t like to exercise, but I recognize the value of movement, bending, stretching, and learning to respect one’s limitations as we age. This is the only body you will ever have, so take care of it.
  • Holidays are a wonderful time of the year, but there is often a downside. How well do you manage stress? We all have different coping skills and mechanisms. Do we have the right focus for this season? Is it about giving or getting the right gift, sending out holiday cards, attending the parties or is it about being thankful for all the gifts we already have or have yet to receive?
  • Changing seasons bring shorter days, less light, and a desire to stay inside. What does your inside time look like? Do you stay active, set aside projects to complete, or use your mind to think, do puzzles, or play games? Try to get outside if only for a few minutes. A shot of brisk, cold air will help you focus and make you feel awake.
  • Think about all the projects you don’t quite get to. Take time to write a thank you note, call friends, or better yet go to lunch with them. Finish the scrapbook of family photos or work on your legal documents. It is easier to stay in a rut than get out of it.

Our birds will make it through the winter with a little help from their friends. Reach out to someone in need and offer a helping hand. And then in the quiet and peace of an early spring morning, you will once again hear the birds singing. A new season has begun.


Ron Tatro is the Vice President at Elder Law of Michigan and has been a member of the Elder Law of Michigan team since January 2007. As Vice President at Elder Law of Michigan, Ron provides support services and executive direction to all aspects of Elder Law of Michigan’s programs.