Keep calm…It’s just a mid-life crisis

Talking about random stuff with friends (where else? On Whatsapp:) –
The conversation was on aging and the things which were rapidly becoming more difficult to do.
True, as our bodies and minds age, our options in life seem to narrow down and the things we used to take for granted either need loads of effort or are plain impossible.
There were friends who were in denial about it. Who frantically joined gyms (for the first time in their lives), dyed what hair remained and were on a rush to try out things like a bee on caffeine.
I guess that’s fine and I hope they can sustain it.  Although the very young may disagree, the thirties, I feel are still within the periphery of youth. Its when one hits the big four-O that things do change. I thought that it was just a myth but my body did change when I hit 40. My eyes were the first to tell me that… I kept wondering about the crappy quality of the mobile phone display until it dawned that the problem was the onset of presbyopia. I was never an athletic one but I was reasonably fit and could reasonably hold my own in any physical activity. That did change! I found myself out of breath and wheezing out like an old steam engine.
Mentally too a deep restlessness seemed to take hold. The feeling that life had been wasted, that I hadn’t done enough, a sense of being stuck in the same spot, of being in limbo. I got around that – it wasn’t easy and probably is the topic of another blog by itself.
The fact is that after a while you get used to it – the absolutely fantastic ability of an organism to adapt. It suddenly dawned that I find the unequivocal realisation that I am no longer young refreshingly liberating.

40s
I was no longer slave to being young or acting young. I no longer screw my eyes while trying to read, I have my set of reading glasses which are wonderful. Three or four days at the pool in a week used to be shameful in my youth but now they are three or four days in a week. I am careful with my workouts, no impulse games of football at picnics, no sir, I prefer the frisbee, or watching from the sidelines and smirking at the wheezing hippos. Swimming is my preferred mode of exercise, the almost zero risk of injury, the solitude it provides, the zen rhythm of the lapping water… I did start to get numbing in my fingers, which was quickly diagnosed as an irritated ulnar nerve at my elbow – kind of a repetitive stress injury. A subtle message that I was overdoing it. The gentle reminder of the body that I was trying to be young again. 80 laps aren’t needed, or need breaks in between.
I am not denying the fact that there are people out there who will vehemently disagree, that youth is all about attitude and sticking to it. Sure, but I think I will try to grow old…as well as I can.

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~ by inmyneed on January 7, 2017.

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