Learning to use a computer (Learning to use a computer (Image by Brian Kelly from Pixabay)

It’s Never Too Late To Learn Something New

Something’s been happening lately that I thought would never happen…my mom is learning how to use a computer! To many, this might not sound like anything special, but to my mom (and me), it’s huge! My mom worked her entire professional life as a hairstylist (no need for a computer). She never learned to type and English is not her first language. But as she now enters the next chapter of her life as a senior, she’s been feeling like the world is passing her by and she isn’t as connected. It does make sense when you think about it…imagine if you couldn’t quickly look up that address for a new restaurant on google or send an email to a colleague. Sure you could text…but I forgot to mention that my parents don’t have a cellphone either!

So last fall, intense planning began on getting her all setup. My 10-year old MacBook Pro was becoming a bit slow and obsolete for all the music stuff I do, so I purchased a new one and in turn gave my mom my old laptop. We got her setup with WiFi at home, bought her a mouse and boom, we were ready to roll when we went home for Christmas.

In the past couple of months, my mom has been doing such a great job of learning how to do basic tasks, using a web browser, doing google searches, watching videos on YouTube. I give her mini lessons when I call her now using Skype. Yes, Skype! It’s pretty amazing to be hundreds of kms away and I can see and talk to my parents face to face. For the past 26 years, it’s only ever been by phone. Recently, I taught her how to open her email. I was able to email my mom! Something I thought I would never be able to do.

Most importantly, I’ve seen my mom become passionate about learning. She has the drive for knowledge and she’s excited about it. Often it’s easy to get set in your ways. But my mom has reminded me that it’s truly never too late to learn anything new.

I’ve also seen this in play for many years in my life as a piano teacher. I’m fortunate to have worked with many retirees and the glow and passion they exude is similar to what I now see in my mom. It’s special and inspiring. And it never gets “old” to see.

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