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Sunday, September 8, 2019

Thoughts on aging.

Cullman,  AL

Lately I have thought much about how life has changed and continues to change.  Leonard and I both feel the effects of our aging bodies.  There are many things we have realized we can not do and probably never will again.

I used to love the rides at amusement parks.  No longer.  This mid 70 body can't take the spins and bumps.  More than 30 years ago Leonard and I met Country Dancing.  We loved it and did it often back in those long ago days.  The last time we danced as we once did was a few years ago.  Impossible now.

Heavy lifting?   No.   Both of Leonard's shoulders are shot.  I can lift more than he can.   A couple of months ago I fell in the backyard.  He was not able to help me up.   I told him I could turn over, get on my knees and would be fine.  Which I did.    That Sunday at church he was telling people what happened.  It was then I learned if I couldn't get up he planned on getting out his tractor and lifting me in the bucket.     WHAT?????

Having the usual aches and pains is one thing.   But often I just don't feel well.  Nothing particular.   Just a feeling.   Leonard is a different story.   Gout (under control with meds)    High blood pressure (under control with meds)   Sleep apnea (uses a CPAP).  Blood clots (blood thinners for rest of his life)   Right knee that gives out on him (has had 3 operations for torn minuses and a knee replacement.... but almost two years ago a dog ran up behind him and between his legs and laid down, tripping him.   Pain getting worse)   And now what appears to be Pulmonary hypertension.  Will be seeing a doctor in Birmingham.   We trust with proper meds he will be back to his old self again.  Or close to it.

At this age we see the passing of friends and relatives.   One close friend passed in the last month.  I was with her when she met her hubby over 50 years ago.  Our parents are gone.   And so many others in the last years, including my beloved brother.    We know to cherish the time we have with the people we love.

My sister Debbie, me and my sweet brother Norman.

We realize life is short.   I have no plans on exiting in the near future but the older I get I find death no longer scares me.  I am okay with that.   I plan for it.... wills, disposing of unnecessary "stuff".   Making the best of the time we have left.   Gosh this is starting to sound sort of morbid.

I don't mean for this blog to be a downer.   Heck there are lots of great advantages to being old.  The senior discounts for one.   Gotta love them.

I found this out in 1992 when I was years from being a senior.   I was at a Society for Human Resource Management Conference (SHRM) in Las Vegas.  I was woken at 3 in the morning to the room shaking.  At first I thought it was the headboard in the next room hitting the wall.   I thought ...Just get done so I can go back to sleep.    Wasn't that.   An earthquake had hit Los Angeles area.   Then one in north Nevada around 8 am.   I went to the hotel lobby to the Burger King.   Got a croissant, OJ and coffee.   I looked at the receipt and the KID serving me gave me the senior discount.   It was a late night and I was awakened by two earthquakes but still......

Senior meals.    Another benefit.  The local senior center is open 5 days a week with various programs.  Included is a nice hot lunch.  At $1.25 a person.  Gotta love it.  We go only about once a week.  But if I ever really get tired of cooking $12.50 a week for the two of us sounds like a deal.

Another benefit I have come to love.  And this is available for anyone.  Walmart Grocery Online.  I go to their site, do my shopping, schedule when to pick up.  Then at my designated time pull up in the truck where they load my groceries and off I go.    Saves money too.   No impulse purchases.  If the item I selected is not available they substitute which is usually an upgrade and I am charged the lower cost.   For example.... once I ordered 10 pounds of bird seed.   They were out of 10 pound bags.  I got a 20 pound bag at the 10 pound cost.  Last week I ordered a one pound box of strawberries.  I got a 2 pound box at the 1 pound cost.    I always hated shopping.  Now I don't have to.  Ah...modern technology.

So now our life is slower.   We relax at home more.  We still think about doing a bit of traveling at some future time.   We can no longer do NOMADS projects as this involves manual work and walking which is difficult for us.  We value the 10 years when we could travel and volunteer with NOMADS.   We have met, and stay it touch, with so many folks we met while on the road.  We have two RV sites on our property where RVing friends can park.  We have a guest room and a futon in my office.   We have had many visitors over the past 2 1/2 years.  All welcome.

We have five terrific kids who are  healthy and doing well.  We are proud of all of our grandchildren and great-grandchildren.   We love each and every one of them.

We love our home.   We love sitting on the porch watching our ducks on our pond and the neighbors peacocks, cows and chickens across the road.   We enjoy our beagle Biscuit.  We love our new home church here in Cullman.    We have been blessed beyond what we deserve.   Life is slower, but life is still good.

Until next time.


  1. I completely understand - a lot of similarities here. With me being 3 years older, I feel it more in some ways than Stu. Also like you, I don't fear death. I'm trying to get more things in order but my digital life seems a bit fluid. LOL! I still have a lot of work to do. Now when I go to buy something, I really think about it. I have too much now, things no one will ever want.

  2. It truly is a fact of life that as we age we become hardened to the fact life can be short. We have not only prepared ourselves about that but spelled it out to our children and grandchildren as well. That did get us a few shocked looks in return.
    We don't seem to have all the seniors discounts that you have but take advantage of all we can get.
    Be Safe and Enjoy the time you do have here on this earth.

    It's about time.

  3. It's a fact of life and we should take the proper steps. I have a packet for each child of what they are to get and it in their names already. I have a living will so they don't have to worry about any of that decisions for my final day. I have been clearing out my house and selling or donating things for a while now. It is what it is and we need to enjoy life.

  4. At least you are prepared! You have had a fun life, and it's not over yet!

  5. I recognize a few of those things as I get to close to the mid 70's:) I always said life was short and it seems that it is a bit longer than I expected:) So I am just going with it!