Once a month I call bingo for a group of “older adults.” Each month we celebrate whoever is having a birthday. This month Norma stood up and told me she recently turned 80, but felt 60. One of the other ladies quickly chimed in that Norma ran a marathon on Saturday.
I walked toward Norma to question her about the marathon. She corrected the other woman and assured me she ran a 5k, not a marathon. Still….she’s 80!
Another woman stood beside Norma and told me she is the same age as Norma, but looks much older. I did not agree with her (that would have been rude!) but she was right. My mom is part of this Senior Citizen group. I often wonder how much longer Mom will be able to live independently because so many things are “wrong” with her. Mom is 4 years younger than Norma.
The more I talked to Norma the more I realized her youth was a result of her attitude. She is determined to stay young and active as long as she can.
I understand many people are unfortunate to acquire crappy genetics and some people have the misfortune of being involved in a physically damaging accident. However, many people, many many people simply choose to be lazy. How many of us reached middle age and found our rear ends attached to the recliner and our hand to the remote?
I was lucky to realize my future would look bleak if I did not make some changes. At the age of 43 I quit smoking and replaced that addiction with the addiction of exercise. Along with exercise came the desire to eat healthier. I will be the first to admit I continue to struggle with food but my new bad is so much better than my old bad.
Next month I will turn 53 (the age my dad died of an unexpected massive heart attack). At the age of 50 my life long friend and I ran a half marathon in celebration of our birthdays. This past Sunday I completed my first sprint triathlon. June 4th I will complete a 100 mile bike ride.
What will I do next? I don’t know but I hope I’m just like Norma when I grow up!
Saturday morning I drove to the local gym. I sat there in the parking lot for several minutes. I felt like I forgot something.
Water bottle, Check.
Phone, AKA something to listen to while working out, check.
Maybe I need to check my clothing….
I drove back home, got my shoes and returned for my workout.
The first time I noticed the purple spot i didn’t think much of it. Then it lingered, and lingered. Finally I remembered where I had seen something very similar…on my grandma’s arm!
I am getting old lady thin skin!
Just to confirm my suspicions I went into “Cathy’s” office (names have been changed to avoid potential law suits). Cathy is old enough to be my mother – if she gave birth in her late 20’s.
I asked to see her arms. She was hesitant but compliant.
“Oh My God its true.” My screech could be heard throughout the office.
The purple spot on my arm looked just like the many purple spots on “Cathy’s” arms. She laughed and started to explain how they form. I ran from her office in hopes of taking solace in my boss’ office next door. (We’ll call her Charlotte) She too was laughing and made an effort to explain how these purple spots arise. I fell into a chair and listened to what my future held.
I am 52, in good health, exercise frequently and tend to lack maturity. I tend to forget I am aging at a rapid rate. Then my body takes the opportunity to slap me back into reality. The little purple spot? Just another slap.
I love the Golden Girls. Recently I was reminded of an episode. (please excuse paraphrasing) Dorothy and Blanche are talking about facial wrinkles. Dorothy explains to Blanche, if you bend at the waste and look at the floor your wrinkles are much more obvious. On the other hand, if you lay on your back all of your wrinkles smooth out and your face looks much younger.
Blanche takes a hand mirror, leans back and admires her beauty. Dorothy encourages her to lean forward and look in the mirror. Blanche follows Dorothy’s direction and suddenly screeches…”Oh My God Dorothy you are right!”
Dorothy’s response, “Always on your back Blanche!”
Putting the obvious sexual reference aside….
A few days ago Sonya and I took the dogs for a walk. I started snapping pictures of her and Hershey. Then I flipped the camera to selfie and took pictures of them over my shoulder. I noticed how pretty the sky looked, blue with puffy clouds, so I took a few selfies while looking down at the camera. Oh My God…Dorothy was right!!!