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Martha McClellan
Position: Authentic Aging

Lost opportunities with dying friends and family

Three people in my life have died in the past month. All of the deaths were sudden, unexpected and a total surprise to me. I don’t feel “finished” with any of these people. I wou...

We’ve lived at the perfect time in history

Those of us in our 60s and 70s have lived our lives at the best and most exciting time in history. We were born into the 1940s and 1950s, and our lives will most likely end during the 2030s ...

We get so much more than what we need

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what I really need and what I just want. My yoga teacher said something about it recently, and it’s stuck with me. As I go through my day, I...

Spring cleaning or death cleaning?

It’s not spring cleaning anymore. Now it’s death cleaning. A new book, The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning: How to Free Yourself and Your Family from a Lifetime of Clutter, ...

Looking at our responsibilities as we age

Shouldn’t our responsibilities lessen as we age? I’m thinking we did our careers, we did our families, now we can relax. Well, that doesn’t seem to be the reality many of us are experiencin...

Had any fender-benders lately?

I’ve recently experienced two near-collisions with cars. This has shaken me up! The first was walking to my car in the Kroegers parking lot when an SUV came barreling right at me...

New year, new book, new invitations ...

A teacher at a retreat on living and dying I recently attended has written a book that has captured my attention. The title is The Five Invitations: Discovering What Death Can Te...

Devastating fire drives home the impermanence of things

Barn’s burnt down – Now I can see the moon. – Mizuta Masahide My daughter-in-law’s parents’ house burned to the ground during the recent fires in ...

As we age, crossing lines with grace and even joy

There we were, in the Rio Grande Gorge watching the eclipse, the solar flares and being in the quiet stillness of the moment. “Do you hear the canyon wren?” she says. In that lif...

In death, Verlena showed us how to live a rich life

“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” – Verlena Collentine, 2017 Reflecting on Verlena’s life for the last time publicly, I particularly note two things, aside...

The autumn of Verlena’s life

Editor’s note: This column was written before Verlena Collentine’s death Aug. 16 from ovarian cancer. It is the third of a four-part series on her life and death. The first two articles ...

This summer, this moment in time for Verlena

I caught up with Verlena Collentine recently to check in and see how she’s doing. She is the woman who has terminal ovarian cancer and has stopped all medical intervention as of ...