Sunday, November 18, 2018

Aging ain't for cissies

Things changed after my last post, thank goodness.

On Friday morning I was not only wiped out from a terrible night I was (I realise now in retrospect) in despair about the state of my legs. Was this it? Would they ache until I died? I was due to go for a walk with Liz and when we chatted on the phone to decide where to go, I said 'I never want to walk anywhere again. Cycle, yes. WALK, no.'

I know this sounds self-pitying and over-the-top as I always an ache or small pain somewhere. It's a long time since I got out of bed in the morning and didn't have some part of my body saying 'Yoo-hoo!' I am used to that. I know a lot of you are the same age as me, so you're probably in the same position. This was worse. 

Being this age (on the verge of 70) makes one aware of one's mortality. Friends die. Friends have ailments that stop them participating fully in activities they once enjoyed. We have less energy, less stamina, no matter how fit we are. (And I am quite fit.)  I thought my time had arrived for doing nothing but knitting.

After talking to Liz on the phone I went back to bed and tried to sleep. Then Liz came over and we went to lunch. I did nothing else until it was time to drive to Sheffield for a night out with my son-in-law Brian, and my younger grandson. (I hate it that he no longer wants to be named on here, let alone be shown in a picture, but for long-time readers, he is the one who once said 'I don't want to be mean but Sue and Dave aren't posh. They never dust and they have dead flies in their attic.'

He and Brian and I went out to a local jazz event and I had a great time. It was so nice being out with the pair of them, the music was interesting and refreshing (if not to my precise jazz taste, despite the two saxes) and it was fun walking out into a foggy evening in an unfamiliar place and hanging about outside Domino's Pizza for a taxi home. Yes, really. I live a very sheltered life.  I went to bed two hours later than usual in a different bed, slept for eight hours and woke up to have a fun breakfast with Zoe and Brian, with lots of banter about subjects other than the politics or astrophysics to which I am accustomed. (Ahem.)

My legs didn't ache, and I realised that the problem with them had been nothing more sinister or permanent than the result of too many long walks with the Aging Hippie last weekend. I drove home listening to the kind of jazz I DO like, and had so much energy and joie de vivre that I cleaned the house. I even vacuumed up the dead flies in the attic. 

I repotted the doorstep geraniums to bring inside for over-wintering and replaced them with small scarlet cyclamens. I rode my bike for an hour. I did all this without aching legs. 

So it's all going to be OK. Until the next time. Aging is tough. The thing, I think, is not to lose one's nerve, and to build in lots of treats which are refreshing and act as temporary rejuvenations, and to have a son-in-law so sweet natured he invites his mother-in-law out for the evening to listen to jazz. How lucky am I.

p.s. The venue wasn't Ronnie Scott's, it was Crookes Working Men's Club, Sheffield, but I have no pictures, so I'm busking.


Sally said...

Lovely uplifting post Sue. I'm glad to hear that your legs have recovered & what a fun night out, your relatives sound like the best. Sally 😊

Anonymous said...

What a good story to wake up to, Sue.

And you’re right, slight changes to our capabilities feel very daunting as the years accumulate and energy that used to just flow, becomes more elusive.

But the power of treats to fire us up and get back to that’s a very palatable defence!

Sue Hepworth said...

Thanks, you guys. I’m glad you liked the post. 😊

marmee said...

and amen from me too to all the above ! And also a hearty thank you for the post! Been a tough while my side as well, lots of flu of various types raging through the household and every time I feel under the weather I can see the apocalypse on the horizon! I will smile every time I think of "politics and astrophysics" !!