Everything Aches!

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I’m an early riser. It has become my habit when I first open my eyes in the morning to lie flat on my back and take stock of the aches and pains that emanate from various parts of my body. Anyone watching me would wonder what on earth I was doing. I lift and bend various limbs to see what is new or different. Sometimes, I am pleasantly surprised to discover that a previous problem seems to have resolved itself.

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It used to always be my right knee that gave me the most discomfort, but with continuous use of cannabis cream (I use it religiously.) , I no longer feel the throbs consistent with the arthritis in that joint. I am currently plagued by pain in my left shoulder. So, I am trying out various products from the arsenal in my medicine cabinet.

This week, after a tug of war with my 177 pound St. Bernard, I am treating lower back pain. I really should learn that if she doesn’t want to move, she won’t move. I am always the loser in this battle of wills.

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I am quite aware that the aches and pains that I am experiencing are just another reminder that I am getting older. Among my group of friends, there are knee replacements, and hip replacements aplenty. It started me wondering why these surgeries are so common place today, and the wait time for doctors doing these procedures is long. I think back to when I was much, much younger and these kinds of operations were virtually unheard of in medicine.

How did our parents and grandparents and those before them cope with these ailments? My mom, in her eighties, was still maintaining her large home and garden, roller skating twice a week, and occasionally going downhill skiing in the winter. Were they made of better stock? Or were they simply more active during their lifetime than people are today? Has technology robbed us of our physical health? 2a78e38dd433824c51357eb0c258e02e

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I have come to the conclusion that it is a combination of many things, but I guess the proof will be in the younger generations. It will be interesting to see the outcome because as you have heard many times before “use it, or lose it”. I think there may definitely be something in that old adage. So get off your sofa, and phone, and computer and at least go for a walk. You may meet some new friends and discover a whole world of fun just beyond your front door.

 

Thanks for reading,

Penny xo

Who’s Old?

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Driving to the cottage one weekend with my mom, I asked her, “How do you know when you are finally old and mature?” Without a moments hesitation she replied,” How the hell would I know? I’m not there yet!” She was 81 at the time. Now my mom was an amazing example of the idea that you should “die young as late as possible”. She was still rollerskating twice a week and downhill skiing in her 80’s. e9f84813bed03e5582ce442b45bdb0ef

I am by no means saying that aging is a piece of cake, but when you weigh the options, it’s the best choice. From my own experience so far, it is the physical changes that are the most difficult to accept. In past blogs, I discussed the visual changes of growing older like wrinkles, unwanted hair, sagging boobs, and graying hair, but those are relatively minor compared to other body functions.

One of the most obvious signs of getting older is Menopause. I put a capital on that word because it’s a big deal. In fact it is to blame for many of the things I listed above. I will go out on a limb here and say that no one misses their monthly period, but  who looks forward to those damn hot flashes? Those hot flashes affect you and everyone close by you. I remember when I first started to get them; I was teaching grade one. It was the middle of the winter, and I would throw open the windows in my classroom. One morning the principal dropped by for a visit. There sat all the kids wearing their mittens and hats. The principal looked at me and said,”Should I know what’s going on?” Before I could respond, a little voice spoke up, “Mrs. F. is hot!” My principal could barely contain his laughter as he closed the door behind him. He never mentioned it again.

Changes in our vision and hearing are other problems that creep up on us much more slowly. I remember my arms seemed to get shorter and shorter as I strained to read the newspaper, and I had to keep adjusting the volume on the phone and television. I have been wearing “reading glasses”  for several years now, but I am starting to notice that it is more difficult to see distances when I am driving. I guess there is an eye test in my near future.

9c054ffb4fa960ff23b81a5f2d140bd9  Sitting with the girls at the pub is a good demonstration of hearing deficit. Someone will say something and ultimately someone else will tap their neighbor on the shoulder and ask, “What did she say?”It turns into that kid’s game of “Telephone” where they pass a message down a line.

I was talking to a male friend at the pub one night and after the conversation, one of the girls asked what we were talking about for so long. I said that I had no idea because I can’t hear him very well with the music and talking. She said, “But you were answering and nodding your head.” I replied, “I just agree with everything he says and smile a lot.” She started laughing. “That could get you into trouble.” She’s probably right. I may have agreed to wild sex!!! I am counting on the theory that he can”t hear very well either. 5afd794f8e18a60044af87d79ab1fca4

I think the worst part of getting older is leakage. That’s right! I said leakage. You laugh and you pee. You cough or move the wrong way and you fart. There is no getting around it. www.pinterest.caLuckily most of us are in the same situation, so there is a general understanding among our age group. You know you are not alone with these issues because the store shelves and television ads feature helpful hygiene products that are readily available.

And how many others are up several times during the night to visit the bathroom? I can’t remember the last time that I went to bed and slept through until morning. Eight hours of sleep a night be damned!

Oh, I almost forgot! There is one change that makes the other issues less problematic. Memory loss! How many times a day do I go up the stairs and wonder what I am doing there? By the time I walk back down, I have remembered and head back up again.

0793f1b6c625ca3bcb5f78d34abba691 It’s like an involuntary exercise program.

They say that when you are a senior , you are “over the hill”. Where is this hill and what’s on the other side?  I’m not climbing it unless there is wine.

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I think the best piece of advice that I could pass on came from my own doctor, surprisingly. She said that no matter what, keep moving and living your life because when you stop doing all those things that make you happy, it’s downhill from there. And speaking for myself, I am in no hurry to get to the bottom of that damned hill.

Thanks for reading,

Penny xo