There are times when I feel like “if one more body part aches today I just won’t be able to function.”
There are other times when I feel like “I’m only sixty+, I still have at least twenty good years left!”
I heard someone say that sixty is the “new forty”. Well, I suppose in terms of life and work in general, they might be right. However, I’m definitely beginning to understand that life after sixty is a bit of a challenge.
There was a report on the news recently about changing the retirement age again. I don’t intend to retire for many more years, but it seems like at least a rap on the wrist with a ruler to hear that I must wait until I’m nearly seventy! I guess no matter how old we get, we don’t like to be reminded that someone else is making the rules and we have to abide by them.
I am improving my diet and I’ve lost six pounds since Christmas. But it occurred to me one day last week that I may never again be able to sustain a level of activity that will enable me to lose the twenty or thirty pounds I truly need to drop. Not that I’m giving up…I just realized that a history of injuries and arthritis may prevent me from doing more than leisurely walking. So I would have to drastically cut back on calories to make up that difference and I’m not sure I want to do so. Plodding on…
I have always been able to sleep anytime, anywhere, and awake refreshed. Lots of early travel and moving trained me in the art of sleep! My dad would say, “We’re leaving at 2am and I would go to sleep at 8pm and wake up just before the alarm went off”. If we stayed with friends or relatives my parents could just throw a blanket on the floor somewhere and I would fall asleep without a fuss. Except for times of extreme stress or pain I’ve never had trouble sleeping…until recently. In the past year I’ve become a more restless sleeper and I wake up earlier. I usually compensate for that by dozing in front of the television in the early evening. Doesn’t make me a very entertaining companion! LOL And I find that I accomplish fewer tasks in the evening than I did when I was forty.
I’ve always been a fundamentally calm, tolerant person, but I find that as I get older I am less and less tolerant of people who are blatantly bad- those who knowingly break rules, hurt people, and cheat their way through life. I don’t find that I get angry more often…just aggravated and disappointed. I’m tired of the “it’s all about me” attitude that so many people tend to have these days. My parents raised me to believe that it was “all about others” and doing the right thing. Surely there must be a place in between where we can all be happy and benefit from each other.
I’m finding it more and more challenging to cope with a world based on technology. Yes, some of our gadgets have made life easier. Others have just changed the way we do things, without regard for whether the change was good or bad. And those of us who might want to continue to do things our way are told that we can’t. “We no longer make that. We no longer have that service. We no longer support that.” are phrases we hear too often. And they are usually said with derision, by a twenty-something who can’t even spell derision without “spell check”.
So…this morning I find myself somewhere in between young and old. Sixty+ is a time to be challenged but still adaptable, experienced but still learning, aging but still healthy.
I choose to think of myself as wise and wonderful….