Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Not for Sissies

When I was young, if I thought about my body at all, it was to make sure my clothes looked OK and I had my make-up on right. Later, the concerns were: Can I get pregnant? What will it do to my body if I have babies? How do I lose all this weight I gained while pregnant?

For years, none of this was very important. When I finally accepted that it wasn't good for my body to smoke, I chose to forget about what the weight gain looked like—I ate instead of smoking.

Later, the issues became--watch my cholesterol, take hormone replacement therapy to protect against hot flashes and osteoporosis and (they thought) heart disease. In 2002 scientists decided HRT wasn't good for women. What to do? I started lifting weights to strengthen my bones. Along the way, I lost all that weight I gained after quitting smoking. They I took up running, as well. I have become fit and thin.

But what about how my body looks. Would I rather be fat with smooth skin or thin with wrinkles? I'm really not sure about that.

But does that take care of all the issues with my body? Not by a long shot, not at the age of 66. I take aspirin every day—doesn't everybody? That means anytime I make contact with anything hard, I get bruises, or what we call "old person marks ." Then there are the cataracts I had removed. And the arthritis. And the sore shoulder—an MRI shows I will need surgery somewhere along the line.

Oh yes, did I mention the plantar fasciitis?

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