I’ve lived long enough to see a lot of friends and relatives get old. I’ve watched so many deteriorate with age, struggle with doing things that once were easy to do.
Some resign themselves to endure the inevitable loss of quality in their lives. Others fight —- fiercely. I’ve decided to designate myself as a fierce fighter.
I remember when medical specialists were just professionals I visited to verify that whatever malady was bothering me was nothing to worry about and I could go home and basically forget about.
Today, things have changed. I now make regular visits to a neurologist, a neurosurgeon, a cardiologist …. I’ve spent months in therapy — physical not mental, although I might need the latter —, been told to watch my diet, get exercise, stop with all my bad habits, and take my medicines as instructed.
Speaking of medicines, I have been taking 9 to 16 pills a day depending on how many 800 miligram tablets of Ibuprofen I take to calm the pain in my arthritic back.
After a brief stay at Jeff Davis Hospital last week due to having an attack of atrial fibrillation, aka A-Fib, the doc has told me to stop with Ibuprofen and switch to Extra-Strength Tylenol.
I’ve had my cancer-laced prostate gland removed, lens implants, I sleep every night with a “continuous positive airway pressure” machine, more commonly referred to as a CPAP (pronounced “C-Pap”) machine, and I relax in my recliner each night with a heating pad situated across my back — up high, down low, in the middle, or on my neck, depending on which part of me aches the most.
And I can’t just jump up out of my recliner and go …. I have to ease into it, get the blood flowing in my legs, and back, and whatever other part of my body is “stove up.”
If you don’t know what “stove up” means, you’re too young. Just wait. Trust me. You’ll learn. If you live long enough.
And I have a heart murmur. Nothing serious at this point but stay tuned.
I’m lucky, however, that I haven’t had a knee replacement, shoulder replacement, stent, pacemaker, bypass surgery, dementia, alzheimers, incontinence, diabetes, Parkinsons, COPD, macular degeneration …. come to think of it, I’m aging pretty well …. so far.