Integrity vs. Despair by proxy

There’s this theory that was developed by a man named Erikson about how we develop thru our lifetimes. If you ever had a psychology class then you’re probably familiar with it. You can read more about it here:  Erikson’s theory

Anyways, I’ve been thinking about the very last stage called Integrity versus Despair. People who enter in the stage are typically retirement aged or more and it’s a time to reflect on their lives; did they accomplish what they wanted to or are they miserable and feel like they’re running out of time? Supposedly, we all reach this stage. The reason I’ve been thinking about it is because I have a very close family member who just entered into hospice care.

I’ve been thinking about those opportunities that we missed to do more while he was active and healthy. So it seems that I’m experiencing this stage for him because he’s not despairing at all. I have witnessed lots of friends and family members go thru the same thing when a loved one dies or is dying.

It’s a difficult time to say the least. Why am I sharing this with you? Well, I’m wondering if some of you have (or had) the same issues. I also think we need to stop sometimes and reassess our priorities. Do we make enough time for each other? Are we kind to each other? Are we making good memories?

That’s what’s on my mind. Hope y’all are well.


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