elderly · family · photography

New Use for an iPod

For a couple of years, my father kept saying, “I need one of those things,” and he would mimic someone holding a device in their hand and tapping on the screen.

We tried to convince him that an iPad would work well for him — it’s bigger and does a lot of the same things — but no dice. He was sure he needed a smart phone.

Last summer one of my sons upgraded from a iPod Touch to an iPhone, so we gave his iPod to my father. We could connect it to wi-fi in the house and it would function in basically the same way as a phone. My son set up an iTunes account for him, and I had my sister send him his one and only message.

At 87, this is one new trick the old dog can’t learn.

It sits on his tray table. I charge it about once a week for him. The one time I forgot, he told me that we needed to buy new batteries for it. Modern technology is hard for an older person to understand — even the basics of recharging a device.

But every day, he picks it up and pushes the home button. I put a picture of my mother on his lock screen.

“Good morning, Elinor,” he says, and then he sets it down.

I think he finds some security in seeing her face each day.

He found a use for the iPod I wouldn’t have guessed.

25 thoughts on “New Use for an iPod

  1. Then the phone works just fine. It connects him to Elinor. He doesn’t need any more than that … you really do have a delicate and delightful poignancy in your writing.

  2. Lovely. My father, at 95, has kept up with technology (to a certain degree). He does internet banking, we skype, he ‘googles’ things. He wouldn’t be able to do it on an ipad though as he is all but blind. He has a massive TV screen attached to his desk top computer and a large magnifying glass!

    1. That’s awesome that your father is able to keep up with so much.

      My father gave it a valiant effort, but more and more, technology was getting the better of him. His computer was infested with viruses because he couldn’t discern spam from legit. He clicked on ads all the time. I was kind of happy when the computer became just a way to play solitaire — and then he even gave that up. It’s been a steady decline — but I do like the use he has put to his iPod.

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