A few months ago, I lamented the fact that I would soon be turning 60.
I am now officially entering my seventh decade.
Also, as I mentioned, I grok that there are people looking at 60 in their rear view mirrors, most likely shaking their heads, thinking, “Come on Scott. Get over it!” Yet, I remind these naysayers that this is the oldest I’ve ever been. My wife, in attempt to be supportive I presume, has been espousing, “Remember, today is the youngest you’ll be for the remainder of your life.”
Hmmm… I don’t know whether that’s comforting or not. But, what can I say; she’s a child in her fifties. She’ll learn.
So, I went to the doctor for a check up. They checked my weight (“You’re lost a few pounds since last year.” Yay!) and blood pressure (“We need to watch that.” Sigh…)
Then came my height.
I’m going to be vulnerable here so be gentle with your judgment, okay? Most of my adult life, I’ve lied about my height, insisting I’m a towering 5’ 9” when I’m actually a diminutive 5’ 8”. One might rightly wonder why that extra inch matters so much to my obviously frail psyche — and that’s a fair question. Yet, the honest reply is I haven’t a clue. Maybe it’s a guy thing, who knows? Anyway, of late, with newfound maturity, I’ve finally come to grips with the reality that major league basketball is not going to come calling and have accepted my actual stature.
So, it’s one of nature’s practical jokes that I find out I’ve shriveled to five-seven and a half!
“What’s that about?” I asked the doctor.
“Really? Can’t I do something about it? Stretch more? Hang upside down?”
“No, it’s age appropriate.”
That’s a weird phrase.
I’ve always considered “age appropriate” to define behaviors rather than physical traits.
“So, anything else I should know about?” he asked, pulling up a chair.
I pull out my written list (really) of the aches, pains, and concerns I’m experiencing. After all, I only get 15 minutes; I’m going to get my money’s worth. First on my inventory is a nagging ache in my wrist. He inspected both arms, gently poking and prodding, and informed me, “It’s tendonitis, nothing serious.”
“What causes that?”
“Probably just your age. If it doesn’t get better, come back and we’ll see what we can do.”
Next anxiety: my skin isn’t so smooth anymore. There are bumps and blemishes popping up almost as rapidly as the hairs on my head that aren’t vanishing are turning gray. I pointed out the more dastardly offenders.
Yet, again, my fears vaporize.
“Nothing out of the usual. It’s not cancer and I see no cause for concern.”
Of course HE doesn’t see any cause for trepidation, it’s not his arms that have the texture of sun-dried tomatoes.
“Is there anything I can do about it?” I asked. Surely, a doctor in the golden age of medical miracles has some sort of potion one can smear on and restore vitality and youth. After all, this is the future we foresaw in the sixties. I mean we don’t have flying cars and food pills, but there oughta be something we can do about turkey-skin-arms.
“Not really. It’s age appropriate.”
Yikes! Again with that cursed expression. I didn’t use it that much when I was raising my kids.
So, I left his office; satisfied that I’m in “age appropriate” good health but still fuming about the changes I’m experiencing; a definite reminder that aging is mandatory but maturity is optional.
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