My own living and working through normative family transitions of parent care (as both a professional gerontologist and an intergenerational family member) facilitated five important kinds of growth: (a) providing parent care with optimal integrity; (b) understanding, elaborating, and teaching life-cycle theory with increasing depth; (c) using this theory to enrich practice approaches to long-term care; (d) identifying valuable new research directions; and (e) creating a multidimensional professional life that furthers theoretical development and identifies practice principles that promote individual, familial, and societal experiences of a "good old age." This reflective essay addresses these different kinds of growth, as they emerged from and contribute to the ever-developing gerontological domains of theory and practice.
Keywords: Erikson; Life-cycle theory; Person-centered care; Practice; Theory; Vital involvement.
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