Thursday, December 31, 2020

Good-bye and Good Riddance

Oh, what a year it has been!  I imagine 2020 will go down as an unforgettable, even if we would like to forget much of what happened this year.  That is not to say everything in our personal life was negative.  Much of the year was good, even if it didn't turn out like I had planned.

In March, so many things were cancelled.  We don't participate in very many activities in our resort, which was probably good then.  They were all cancelled.  But we still had to change our plans.  We had reservations along the route from Phoenix to Memphis, TN, where we planned to attend Memphis in May, a national BBQ event.  It was cancelled, so we cancelled our reservations along that route.

Then we learned that we would not be able to attend the graduation ceremonies for our granddaughter Rachal in New Hampshire.  The date of the graduation was changed because of the pandemic but while they were deciding on a new date, we decided traveling half-way across the country without knowing if or when we could attend the ceremony, we decided not to go.  We were able to watch it on Facebook.  Not a good option, but better than not seeing it at all.  

We ended up staying at our winter home in Arizona until mid-May.  We then made a few stops in northern Arizona and New Mexico and on into Colorado.  We had good family time, then returned to our winter home in mid-September.  Probably our shortest travel season in years.

As I look through my travel diary, I find comments like, we're learning not to plan, life is on hold, life is so uncertain, it feels like we are living in a foreign country.  Unfortunately, this hasn't changed much since March.  We tried having groceries delivered, but have ended up grocery shopping with a mask on, visiting stores to obtain hobby supplies, talking to people from 6 feet away, outside only.

We have discovered Zoom and Google Hangouts, two virtual meeting apps that help us keep in touch with family.  It isn't as good as seeing people in person, but we are grateful our two Colorado grandchildren want to see us that way each week.  Oh yes, and their parents, too.  Especially since they spend many hours each week working and attending school online, we are glad they want to see us, too.  It is certainly better than phone contact only. 

Other positive things this year.  After seeing our IRA brokerage accounts showing a loss for year since March, today I checked and we are no longer down for the year.  That may only mean we are back where we started in March, but it is always good to see only green on the chart, not red.

I long for  the day when we won't need to wear masks or talk to people from 6 feet away, and outdoors only.  But I have adjusted to the masks and the limitations.  It is doable, at least for a while longer.  Someday, I will be able to hug a friend or family member when we haven't seen each other for a while.  And we won't have to ask how long they have been in quarantine to make sure we don't contract Covid 19.  

Not only do I say good-bye and good riddance to the year 2020.  I want to live the years we have left in our lives, not just avoid any possible contact with this plague.  Good-bye and good riddance, Covid 19, I hope to be able to say soon

Are we only as old as we think we are?

I started blogging in 2006.  We had been RVing for 16 years and I decided to keep our family informed about where we were and what we were doing through a blog.  I was 63 years old.  But age is just a number isn't it?  Aren't we only as old as week feel we are?

Today we are 77, nearly 78 years old.  So, how old to I feel I am?  Every bit of those 77 years!  

About 19 years ago, I suffered a torn meniscus and it hurt, at times pretty bad.  After a period of time, I went to the urgent care nearby and had an Xray.  They sent me to a surgeon.  Until the surgery was scheduled, I wrapped the knee and went about my normal everyday life--as best I could.  That surgery made a real difference.

Eventually, that meniscus surgery no longer took care of the problem.  My knee began to bother me, almost every time I stepped on that foot.  Long story short, in mid-November I had a total knee replacement of my right knee. 

Let me tell you, those years have made a difference.  The surgery has healed well.  I am recovering very well.  But, at 77 healing and total recovery takes time--more than I would like.  Every time we walk, I feel it in my right knee. It hurts.  And the long we walk, the more it hurts.  

I haven't recovered like I did nearly 20 years ago.  I wonder why?  Is it my age, do you think?  I know I do.   It took my 77+ years to get to this point.  And every bone, joint and muscle in my body is also 77 years old.  They are at times as slow acting and as slow recovering as I am.

Age is more than how I feel.  Age is an actual, verifiable fact.  Live with it.

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Who Knew There Was So Much Needing Repair?

Each fall when we return to Arizona, we schedule check-ups with all our medical providers.  As we get older, there are more and more providers and it takes a while to get them all scheduled.  And this year, there was one more—John felt I should have my hearing checked.

So, when all was said and done, the relatively minor ache in my right knee led to a total knee replacement.  And not long after, the hearing test revealed I really can’t hear very well and hearing aides were ordered.

A one-night stay in the hospital and I came home with a new knee.  I am up to walking over three miles a day.  It is a little sore but getting better each day.

The hearing aides are taking some adjusting to.  I didn’t realize the world was such a noisy place.  Even toilet paper is noisy.  So is walking across the floor or over gravel.  Doors slam easily and LOUD. The clock on the wall might as well be Big Ben in London with all the noise it makes. How many of you have experienced these reactions, too?

John has been wearing hearing aides for nearly 30 years, so he can commiserate and tell me which irritations I will learn to live with or not notice.  But, frankly, walking is easier than hearing correctly.

Getting old has it’s down side, but I can count my blessings.  First off, I live in a time and have the resources to get these issues taken care of.  And nothing is life threatening.  I can’t say as much for some of our neighbors here.  We are really blessed to live in a time and a country where issues like this can be corrected—or at least improved.  And we are also blessed to have the insurance to pay for it. Thank God for Medicare. 

Merry Christmas everyone!  Surely 2020 will end and 2021 will be a better year.  We hope and pray you all stay healthy during this pandemic.