I saw my doctor the other day about my chronic back pain. It got me thinking. I’m only 56 years old, but I feel like 86. I can’t figure out why that is. I don’t drink, smoke, stay up late. I always thought I would just age gracefully and maybe in my 70’s start getting some of the unavoidable aches and pains that come with normal wear and tear on the body.
It all started back when I was 30. I noticed little things starting to happen, but I didn’t pay much attention. That’s how it starts to creep up on you. You don’t realize what’s happening until you have to go around visiting all kinds of different doctors. At around 30 I had my 3 impacted wisdom teeth pulled. It seems almost everyone has to have them pulled, no one’s mouth is big enough to hold them all. Then I had a mole on the back of my ear lobe that the doctor thought looked suspicious, so that was removed and biopsied and all’s well. I had my girls at 32 and 35 and then my memory went. Something about childbirth that they don’t tell you is that it takes away your memory.
Between 35 and 40 I found I couldn’t read the prescription bottles to give the girls their medicine so I went and got glasses. Between 40 and 45 I was getting dizzy spells every day so I went to the ear doctor. He ran all kinds of tests and finally diagnosed it as fluid in the inner ear. I should be fine in 6 weeks with the meds. Between 45 and 50 I get a rare form of cancer, LMS. Dodged a bullet there. My hair starts graying, my knees hurt when I walk too far, my teeth start becoming sensitive to cold and hot things, my prescription glasses have to be tweaked up every year…but who’s complaining?
Now, for the past year, as I am between 55 and 60, my lower back aches all the time. After having two MRIs and facing the possibility of another serious scare, it turns out the pain is due to normal degeneration and “aging.” Oh, and I noticed my left leg swells from water retention too. Is this all I have to look forward to? I’ll tell you what I am going to do about it. I am going to start physical therapy and hope the stretching reduces the pain or eliminates it. I am determined to get rid of the 20 pounds extra I have put on, because that can’t be helping my back or my leg. I will report back to you after a while and tell you how it’s going or not going.
Meanwhile, I just can’t wait to see what 60 to 65 has in store for me! So much for the golden years. They sure aren’t what I imagined they would be!