We all have to die (reprise)Friendo 14 comments
Now don't get me wrong on this. I like people, and do not judge them by appearance. I only judge by appearance if I see them shopping at Wal Mart. When I see fat ugly deformed people shopping there, I get fearful that I look like them. That's another article though.
This article is about getting old, something I have written about before. It truly is a terrible thing. As young persons we live indestructible lives, with eons ahead of us, and no need to worry. Then, at some indeterminate time in our mid fifties or so, we realize that we only have so many good years left, and wish we had started thinking about this much earlier.
Today, and every day that I look into the pill bottle that contains my blood pressure medicine, each tiny pill tries to represent one of my remaining days, and I am forced to consider how many pills/days I have left. Is my bottle half full, is it almost empty, how many refills do I have left if any?
Then, to make it worse, as I waddle through my life, I constantly encounter persons older than I, who are on oxygen, using a walker, in a wheelchair, or are somehow deformed by age. These are the people I used to make fun of as a child. They were disgusting to me then, and oh no-they are disgusting to me now. Only problem, I see this now as my fate, and it's not so funny any more.
I am starting to have pains, my neck is starting to get that gobble thing, there are crows feet around my eyes, and I lose 321 hairs per day. To compound matters, my girlfriend* keeps getting shorter, and gaining weight. I fear that she will soon have the shape of a basketball. She keeps “trimming” her hair, and I just know it will soon be in tight little silvery white curls that state: “I am trying to look as old as I possibly can.”
Why do women do this? “Look honey, I know I'm only 56, but my hairdresser is helping me look like I'm in my 80's” Why is that? Is there some club for women? Is it a hairdresser conspiracy?...I can hear them now: “Look guys and girls (fellow hairdressers) if we keep cutting off just a tiny bit each visit, tint it a bit whiter each time, keep telling them how great they look, we will have customers till the day they die.”
“Friendo darling, I am just going to get a tiny bit trimmed this time. Oh, and I need to get bangs, I'm so tired of having this in my eyes.” Don't they know if they just let it grow, it will never go in their eyes again.
And us men...Oh My God. Don't we ever look in the mirror? The nose hairs, the bushes growing out of the top of our ears, the Andy Rooney eyebrows. Oh God, the hair loss. And what about libido? Oh man, this is getting depressing.
I saw a guy in the market today, using a walker. He had this huge hump on his back, and his neck was swollen, vertebra poking out of the back of it, he resembled something out of the movie Alien 3. I know there is a real person in there, and I would never judge the person by their looks, but jeez, is that going to happen to me? Ulp!
I mean this is messed up. Life is so great, why do we realize it so late, and then have to get old?
I saw a movie a while back called: “Away from Her” In the movie; “Grant, a retired professor, must watch his beautiful wife, Fiona of forty-four years deteriorate in the clutches of Alzheimer’s, before finally agreeing to put her into a care home. His pain is just beginning, however, as once there, she rarely remembers him and he must watch as she forms a relationship with another man, whom she meets there.”
Talk about depressing. If your in your fifties or older, you have to take a look at this movie. Most of us are just waiting for our spouse, or the other way around, (our spouse is waiting for us) to be hit with the onset of Alzheimer’s, lung cancer, stroke, broken hips, arthritis, heart disease, geez, you name it.
If you ask me, it’s a good news/bad news situation for us all. You get this great thing called life, you finally catch onto how wonderful it is and how it works, but you have to spend the last 20 years taking care of your sick spouse, or the other way around.
I can’t say that it’s a crummy deal though; all you have to do is look at the millions dying in other countries. Starvation, Aids, Genocide, Death squads, refugee camps, torture, human rights.
Today I’m 57 years old; soon to be 58, I look and act young, and though I don’t want to die, I dare not complain. 500 years ago, I would have been one of the oldest men alive.
I want to say this in closing: If you are young, take it to heart…Live every day like it might be your last. Do something for somebody that might make a difference. Love people when you can, try to when you can’t. Be nice to everyone. When you’re wrong, admit it. Don’t waste your life on petty things. Don’t be an angry person; you have such better things to do with all your good energy.
Smile more, forgive faster. Count to ten, take a deep breath. “Listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story…If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself...Enjoy your achievements, as well as your plans. Be yourself. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.”
*=Let me make this clear: My girlfriend is a slim and attractive, young looking 52 year old woman with a Masters Degree in Reading and Education. She does not, and most likely will never bear any resemblance to anything or anyone I am talking about in this article.