Sometimes, life just creeps up on you. Yesterday, the Mrs. and I went to get our annual eye exam. I figured no problem; my eyes seem the same. I wasn’t too concerned.
After waiting in the lobby for over 40 minutes while the ladies told goofy stories and laughed the entire time, I got my chance for the doctor to ‘take a peek’ at my eyes. I’m an age-old veteran of these visits; puff in the eye, light in the eye, nose breathing while you look at my retina, and, last but not least, the onset of repeated questions, ‘Which is better? Number 1 or, number 2?... repeat…”
After the number 1 or 2 questions, the doctor asked me, ‘did we talk about cataracts last year?...” Huh?! Wait, did the doctor just ask me about whether we talked about CATARACTS?? Yes, (head bowed), she did and, no, we didn’t talk about that last year.
It was one of those moments where the age reality hits you right in the face and doesn’t look back. Coming from a family where cataracts have occurred, along with monocular degeneration, I’ve been waiting for some kind of diagnosis like that in the FAR future, but NOT NOW!
I asked the doctor to clarify, and she said, ‘oh, it’s just on the outside edges now. It takes 10-15 years to get really bad’. I know, I know. I should just accept the reality that I’m 53 going on 54 and rely on science (and insurance) to one day get a lens replacement. No biggie, right?
I guess the reality isn’t such a big deal in many ways. It wasn’t like the doctor told me I was going blind (at least not in the next 10 years). But, it did take me down a few notches from my ‘I’m still young’ mentality. Maybe that’s exactly what I needed, however.
Getting old is a natural part of life. I see it every day in those around me. Just go on Facebook and look up people you knew 30-40 years ago (no offense you guys). We all are getting older.
Me, I’m getting gray hair on top of the head and not just the beard (which, thankfully, the Mrs. loves…). I’m getting the aches and pains of the joints, high blood pressure, memory lapses, gray hair, and, of course, the reading glasses. Sometimes, when I look in the mirror, I wonder, ‘who’s that guy?’
It took a few hours to get over the reality that, yes, one day I’ll need to go under the knife to get my eyes fixed (again). After some thought, I quietly settled my mind and put it on the shelf (right next to those things I don’t want to think about…).
Getting older isn’t so bad, I guess. I mean, we can’t live in this life forever. I know people older than me who, frankly, feel like they’ve lived too long. I truly believe the Asian culture has it right, though. The older you get, the more respected you are. Now, THAT is what we need in our culture here.
So, tonight, here’s to all of you out there who are right in the same boat as me. Keep your chin up (at least when you don’t have to use those reading glasses). We’re all in this together. We may not all arrive in the next life at the same time, but we can walk that road together and, hopefully, have a chance to share some of those years of built-up wisdom with our kids, grandkids, and great grandkids.
Most of all, tonight, remember, no matter how old you are, in the heart, we’re all His children and I, for one, will never let go of that youthfulness (much to the Mrs. chagrin). I plan to be doing the goofy walk down the street when I’m 90+ years old, even if I need a walker to help me out!...
Wishing you all a blessed day tomorrow my friends,