Multi-award winning author Frances Fuller offers a unique outlook on aging based on her own experience. Frances Fuller’s book has arrived at the right time, just as Covid-19 isolated a lot of people who don’t need to be alone.
WILMINGTON, NC, June 12, 2020 /24-7PressRelease/ — Social isolation and lockdowns go against human nature, as we are social creatures by nature. For the elderly and shut-ins, doubly so. Many seniors, even those with support systems, can experience a loss of connectedness and feel cut off. For those without support systems, the challenge can be overwhelming. Loneliness and isolation, regardless of age, have the potential to exacerbate both physical and mental health conditions.
In her highly lauded book on aging, ‘Helping Yourself Grow Old, Things I Said To Myself When I Was Almost Ninety’, Frances Fuller gives us a penetrating glimpse of loneliness:
“Lately I have noticed an emotional neediness that does not feel natural. Lonely on Sunday afternoons and at the end of a normal day, I grab my phone or my tablet, looking for a text from someone. Sometimes I keep it near me while I try to read a book or watch a game on television, thinking that I have a big family; surely someone is thinking of me, remembering that I am here, needing to talk to someone.
“But, what do I want to talk about? Do I have something to tell? Not really. I just want to hear their story. How is your job going? What did you learn today? Did you see the ball game? When are you coming? To keep them going, I make up trivial questions.
“The real problem is my neediness. They are busy. They have a lot of people besides me in their lives. They can’t know that none of the other twenty-four members of the family are talking to me tonight. They don’t have any big news or I would hear it. They are in a meeting. They have to study for tomorrow. They are grading student papers. They are practicing for the Easter musical. They are out with friends and it would be rude to answer a text right now. In other words, they have a life. Good for them. Be proud. Take care of yourself for goodness sake.”
There are many great books on aging available. However, many of them were written from an academic point of view. Most are penned by sociologists, doctors, gerontologists, even the CEO of AARP, and one by a Catholic nun, Joan Chittister. Chittister’s book, ‘The Gift of Years’ is beautifully written, focusing on spiritual values and finding meaning in life. Chittister admits in the preface that she was only 70, which is the front edge of aging, and her book is somewhat abstract.
Atul Gawande’s book, ‘On Being Mortal’, relates medicine and old age, It enjoys high Amazon rankings, in the category of “the sociology of aging.” It contains a great deal of valuable scientific information and shows understanding of the physical and emotional needs of the elderly.
Frances Fuller’s book, ‘Helping Yourself Grow Old, Things I Said To Myself When I Was Almost Ninety’, is an up-close and very personal encounter with aging. It is an uncontrived and firsthand look at her own daily experiences: wrestling with physical limitations, grief, loneliness, fears, and the decisions she has made about how to cope with these and keep becoming a better person. She faces regrets and the need to forgive herself and others and is determined to live in a way that blesses her children and grandchildren.
Frances deals with many common, universal but sometimes private issues in an open, conversational tone. Her confessions and decisions invite self-searching and discussion. She tries to make sense of her own past and to understand her responsibility to younger generations. In the process she shares her daily life, enriched with memories from her fascinating experiences. Her stories and her voice — fresh, honest, irresistible — keep the reader eager for more. The end result is a book that helps create a detailed map through the challenging terrain of old age.
The result of this intimate narrative is that readers laugh, cry and identify with her mistakes and problems. Reviewers have called the book, “unique,” “honest,” “witty,” “poignant,” “challenging” and “life-changing.”
For these reasons it is a book unlike any other book on aging you will ever read. The book can serve as a primer on what lies in store for all of us, from someone who is working through many of these issues. While the book is a perfect fit for book clubs, there are many other individuals and groups who could benefit from the information and ideas in the book:
Those approaching retirement
People who are currently retired
Children of aging parents
Those who have lost a spouse
Retirement community discussion groups
Church groups (men and women)
and a host of others. For group discussions, Fuller has made a set of discussion questions available at her website at http://www.FrancesFullerAuthor.com.
Readers have lavished praise on the new book. One Amazon review stated, “I find myself thinking,’I need to read this again and take notes!’ It’s full of wisdom, humor, and grace. I also have committed to rereading it annually – it’s that important!” Another said, “There is valuable life experience in this book. Helping Yourself Grow Old is truly is a book for all ages, and one not to be missed.” Another stated, “Beautifully written book telling timeless truths, for both the old and the young. Highly recommend this book for anyone who loves to laugh, cry, and learn wisdom from someone who has lived so much life.”
Frances’ prior work, ‘In Borrowed Houses’, has taken three industry awards. Frances Fuller was the Grand Prize winner in the 2015 ’50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading’ Book Awards. It received the bronze medal for memoir in the Illumination Book Awards in 2014. Northern California Publishers and Authors annually gives awards for literature produced by residents of the area. In 2015 ‘In Borrowed Houses’ received two prizes: Best Non-fiction and Best Cover.
Critics have also praised ‘In Borrowed Houses.’ A judge in the 22nd Annual Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards called ‘In Borrowed Houses’ ” . . a well written book full of compassion . . . a captivating story . . . “. Another reviewer described the book as “Wise, honest, sensitive, funny, heart-wrenching . . .”. Colin Chapman, lecturer in Islamic Studies at the Near East School of Theology in Beirut said, ” . . . western Christians and Middle Eastern Christians need to read this story…full of remarkable perceptiveness and genuine hope.”
Frances Fuller is available for media interviews and can be reached using the information below or by email at [email protected]. Fuller’s books are available at Amazon and other book retailers. A free ebook sample from ‘In Borrowed Houses’ is available at http://www.payhip.com/francesfuller. More information, including discussion questions for ‘Helping Yourself Grow Old’, is available at her website at http://www.francesfullerauthor.com.
Frances Fuller spent thirty years in the violent Middle East and for twenty-four of those years was the director of a Christian publishing program with offices in Lebanon. While leading the development of spiritual books in the Arabic language, she survived long years of civil war and invasions.
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