I Decline

I am not going to lie, I have been relatively blessed health wise. Much to my doctor’s semi-joking chagrin I am proof that not every fat person has diabetes, hypertension or cholesterol.  I am not running any marathons, but I can haul ass to catch a bus from a half block off, if so inclined, and not feel like I’m going to keel over for it.  I’ve been to a hospital five times for my own health: the births of my two sons, the first time I had a migraine, when I fell down a flight of stairs and sprained my ankle and when a pharmacy misread pain medication for said sprain that had me feeling so off forty-eight hours later I went back.  So yes, I’ve been blessed up until now. And that is the caveat – up until now.

I am fifty-six and I am beginning to feel the first signs of my body’s seemingly inevitable decline. I know it well. My right knee goes in and out of aches of its own accord.  I can go months without a symptom, then bam! it’s back for a few weeks or so. 

I went to see National Theatre’s “Cyrano de Bergerac”  with James McAvoy a couple of weeks ago. It was a cold, cold, blustery a work day, which meant a long day as the event was after work. Worse it was a training day, so I was on my feet for a good portion of it. I had on my comfortable boots, and thought I was ready!!! At least I was ready until about 4pm when I felt that first twinge that told me there was going to be a problem. 

Now add to that when nearly twenty ago I fell down a flight of stairs and sprained my right ankle badly. I was fine, or thought I was, until about 2012 or so when it manifested itself as arthritis  in that ankle that seems to flare up only on damp days under 30 degrees. It took nearly three winters and springs for me lock down the pattern. When both aches are in active session it is a trial to simply stand some days, let alone walk or run anywhere.

At something to midnight when the event was over, my sassy strut had devolved to a sorry stumble. I took it in (painful) stride and had a great time regardless.Two days later, the pain had abated as if it never existed,  but yeah it happens just like that sometimes.

I am a long way off from it, but there are days where I have taken the possibility of lack of easy mobility into consideration. Naturally, I hope, wish, and pray it does not comes to that, but I’m telling you now, I will crutch, walker and scooter, should it become necessary, and sally forth. There’s still far too much I want to do and the more things I do, the more things I find to do, so I’m going to do as many of them as I can.

And any words to the contrary will get this response:

Characters from “LOST” exclaiming “Don’t tell me what I can’t do!”

Because as painful as it can be sometimes to decline physically – I decline to let it stop me until it, well, stops me.

10 days down – twenty-one to go!
It is Day 10 of the March Slice of Life Writing Challenge for 2020. Don’t decline – stop in and see how others are slicing it up today!

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13 thoughts on “I Decline

  1. I’m feeling some of that decline myself. I loved your line, “I will crutch, walker and scooter, should it become necessary, and sally forth.” Sally forth, my friend!

  2. My knees are fine, but my hips, especially the left, remind me constantly that I am no longer 20-something. I sat down on the floor a few times today and couldn’t make it back up easily. I am not ready to have my body stop working the way I want it to!

  3. Oh, I know this so well. 😦

    And I went to see Cyrano, too! I wonder if we were in the same theater. Wish I’d known, I’d have planned to go with you! I thought McAvoy was amazing, and I loved the production!

    • I saw it at 42nd Street on the 20th. I’ve adored McAvoy since “The Last King of Scotland”, but the close up of his face during the “I want…” soliloquy of Cyrano…? I was breathless.
      It was worth the pain.

      • I’ve loved him that long, too … but that Cyrano performance was beyond!

        We weren’t in the same theater, however. I went to Court Street.

  4. It’s funny how our body tends to remind us at times that we are not as young as we use to be even though in our minds we are still in our strapping 20’s . I am at the point where when I get an ache I just it is my body telling me I am still alive. Kathy finally broke down and asked he doctor for a handicap parking sticker for the car. We don’t use it often, just at the Hershey Theatre where we would have to park and walk up a hill to get inside. She cannot walk hills. Aches are not going to stop us from doing what we enjoy.

  5. Love your honest, feisty post. The clip is a fun addition. My favorite line you wrote is: “my sassy strut had devolved to a sorry stumble.” Now that’s how alliteration makes a line great!

    • Thanks, Fran. Alas, I am an editorial nightmare. I have to make myself not alliterate so much when writing. Consonance and rhyme just naturally flow sometimes.

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