I was listening to a gerontologist being interviewed on the Internet tonight and had to think…………….I can’t be old because I am not at all like the descriptions the doctor (whom I am only assuming is a PHD) was presenting or that perhaps I am somewhat anomalous. Actually, I think that’s a good thing, who wants to be categorized, pigeonholed or stuck into a classification or type? It surely isn’t odd to think of oneself as unique, different from others and neither is it arrogant. Human beings are unique even though they sometimes have some habits and characteristics in common. Isn’t that how we form friendships? We are attracted to people with whom we share beliefs and attitudes.
I’ve come to accept that, like all people, I am aging. Fortunately, I am among the lucky humans who seems to be (at 75) enjoying better than usual good heath for that age in that I take no prescription medications and except for a stubborn rash on one hand and a case of tendinitis in my right shoulder, I seldom have occasion to consult a doctor, twice in eighteen years is a pretty good record. Sure, I have some aches and pains as I seem to have about the same level of osteoarthritis as my mother who is 93, in reasonably good health and who still lives in her own condo in a senior residence in a suburb of Atlanta. We both manage that with over the counter medications like Aleve, That pretty much covers the physical part, mentally I feel I am still pretty much as sharp as ever which I attribute to having to learn how to use a computer seventeen years ago when I was still a real estate agent.
For some reason that self education was easy for me, it was as though my brain is wired like the machines I have worked with, both then and now. I have found it frustrating however, that my husband seems not to want to learn how to do anything new on the computer. I can understand his mindset as he is also self-taught but in an era before windows when all commands were by keyboard (no such thing as a mouse) and most of his work was simply writing reports or professional papers in front of a blue screen with orange letters. I understand his feelings but things are so much easier now and there are some great programs out there in cyberspace………….like this one! I will, however, be happy to update the programs that he does use and correct things when he becomes frustrated. He is correct in that people who write computer programs are a jealous bunch who have no interest in writing programs which are compatible with other people’s previously successful programs…..I call it guarding one’s bones and well adjusted people have no need to behave like that. It is interesting to note that with the exception of one of my children, the others come to me to ask “how to” questions about computers and their operation. It really is a good feeling to be helpful to one’s grown children and even, occasionally, to my grandchildren………..perhaps I even feel a bit smug about it though I hope that emotion does not show, it’s not an attractive characteristic.
I can only hope to retain my current good health as long as possible, life is an adventure that I am not finished enjoying!
Since I wrote this slightly over 2 years ago, my outlook on aging has changed somewhat. Though I still enjoy general good health, I have, in the past 7 months had two orthopedic surgeries to correct a severely osteo-arthritic hip and a knee which had also become problematic fifty five years after I injured it water skiing. I am fortunate to live in a community where the medical facilities are excellent and the physicians are top notch. My surgeon performed both of my joint replacements, the right hip in September of 2013 and the knee on January 7th of 2014. I am told that I no longer have any arthritic joints which was pleasant to hear. I am finding that I belong to a large group of people I know personally but until now did not know had joint replacements as well. We call ourselves the bionic people. I am interested in seeing how I will be handled at the airport next Tuesday when my husband and I will be flying to Atlanta to visit my mother and a brother who lives there as well. It will be wonderful to see them after two years and we will not allow that much time to elapse before the next visit which we are planning for the fall of this year.