Saturday, April 5, 2008

Entering a new era...

My oldest son will turn 30 on April 14. I don't feel like I'm old enough to have a 30 year old child. My mind still thinks I can do the things that I did many years ago. I understand how the elderly get so upset with the passing of time and how it robs them of their ability to function in a way that they want to. I understand all too well.

When I lost the hearing in my right ear several years ago, I suddenly understoon why my MIL had so much trouble understanding what was being said. Although she used hearing aids, if there was any background noise, that's all she heard. I'm the same way. I have a set of hearing aids but I rarely use them. They pick up everything but conversation so it's really a waste of time and a constant source of frustration. Some days I think I'd like to try them again, and I use them just long enough to wear down the batteries. I'd like to try some of the updated ones but our insurance will no longer cover hearing aids. Bummer...

I look at the commercials on TV with the young couples, or even just younger women, and I think to myself, "I used to do that." Age is an insidious thing that creeps up on you without you even realizing it's done so. We have the "before" age and the "after I turned..." age. My closeup eyesight was great until I turned about 45. Then all of a sudden I couldn't see what things said on the labels. I still tried to ignore the fact that I had to hold things farther and farther away from my eyes just to read it. I reluctantly went to bi-focals, but got the lineless ones. Three pairs later, I still can't read the closeup things and use the distance portion at the same time. I can't figure out where my eyes are supposed to focus in them so they spend most of the time in the holder on my desk at work. $20 readers from the drug store help more than the others. Of course, I still have my single vision glasses for distance. I just have to take them off and switch into the readers. Oh well...

I also look at people enjoying the outdoors or working in their gardens and I think that is also something that I'd like to do. But, I get too hot or too winded or I just don't know what to do - so I do nothing. I've discovered that inactivity can age you just as fast, or even faster, than real time. My goal for me this summer is to get out more and enjoy the wonderful outdoors that God has provided. We have a great view and the possibility of a great outdoor space. I still don't like to get too hot and I'm really a wimp when it comes to getting dirty (I hate it), so I'm not too sure how much of the outdoors I'll "remodel" myself.

Once you pass 50, you get all the medical tests that are reserved for seniors. Oh my! Most of those are really no fun. I "get" to see what a heart cath is like and I'm really not looking forward to that. Anxiety attacks happen without warning and I'm afraid while I'm not supposed to be moving, I'll have an instant urge to get out of bed. I told the doctor that I needed to have some help for relaxation and he said that was not a problem. Good.

I look at people on television that I've seen for years and all of a sudden I realize how old they look or how old they must be. Then it hits me.... I'm that old, too! I pass women in the stores and wonder, "Do I look that old?" Or, I'll wonder if I look as young as they do. I'm not terribly vain but I do have a few things I'm concerned about. Losing my hair, getting varicose veins, and the skin on my face and neck looking old and tired. I don't wear makeup and I don't spend a lot of time on my hair (but, maybe I should). I just don't know what to do to make myself look younger or to look better. I know I'll never be a beauty (never was, never will be), but I'd like to look the best that I can for my age. I just don't know how.

You'd think that once I got to the age that I am, I'd quit worrying about how I look to others. That is a definite sign of vanity that I have. I don't want people to think I'm ugly, or to think I'm fat, or to wonder what people see in me to love. I can wonder it but I don't want them to! I'd like for my teeth to be whiter and straighter. I'd like to be comfortable in my skin. I'd like to dress in a manner that's comfortable but yet stylish.

That, even with age, doesn't change.

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