Oh, to be young again! Personally, I would pass on that wishful opportunity. I have no desire to return to my youth but I would like to stay young at heart at whatever age I’m at. The funny thing is the young-minded me and the senior citizen me fall out of balance on occasion. A series of events in the last two weeks confirmed my case in point.
I had an opportunity to fly with my daughter to Europe, something that I’ve done many times in my life. I simply didn’t remember the level of discomfort as much as I did on this trip. We splurged and purchased economy plus seats for the extra leg room but seven more inches simply wasn’t adequate. Granted, First Class (there was no Business Class) was five-thousand dollars each to upgrade to a reclining seat for an 8 ½ hour flight. It was a no brainer, spend the money in Italy and not on a reclining seat. That was the young-minded me! The senior citizen me paid the price.
Over Easter weekend we celebrated with family at our home in Matagorda. My daughter came up early with her two children, Chiara and Sawyer. I spent time talking with Chiara about it not being that long ago when she was Sawyer’s age, sixteen months old. I carried Sawyer around lowering and lifting him up in the air just like I use to do for Chiara. That was the young-minded me thinking I could still implement those maneuvers. By Sunday, I left the heavy lifting to his dad and mom.
Monday morning was a new day. I opened all the windows to let the fresh air in and restore order to the house. Little did I know there was more than eggs and candy in my basket from the Easter Bunny. Family germ warfare had taken its toll on me with high fever and chills. Monday and Tuesday passed with no end in sight. The young minded me thought I should have kicked it by now. The senior citizen me was dialing up the doctor’s office for an appointment. Wednesday morning my sole focus was to get from my house to the medical office. There was no thought of make-up, hairstyle, wardrobe or cologne. I thought of my mom. No matter how sick she was, she would dress up in her Sunday best to see her doctor. After surveying my appearance, the medical staff rushed me right through. The young minded me would never have been caught outside the house looking like a deranged bag lady. The senior citizen me knew it was time to get this show on the road.
The time has come to set new boundaries for myself. When it comes to air travel, I plan to research more flight options and allow more adjustment time for jetlag. When it comes to celebrating my grandchildren, holding hands and taking walks will have the same loving benefit as trapeze tricks. And when it comes to my health, it’s simple, no more short cuts. Fever and chills for more than twenty-four hours indicates it’s time to seek professional help, but hopefully in a more suitable style and attire!
Originally published in the Bay City Tribune on Sunday, April 23, 2017