How do we get old?

3 years ago, after a visit to my parents I was suddenly hit with the realization that they were old.
I drove the hour trip home and my thoughts were more on Mum and Dad than concentrating on the road. 
At dinner that night…. I just quietly announced "I think Mum and Dad have got old"
They suddenly looked old.

My Dad was angry that his hands shook. Dad, the artist who made the finest instruments could no longer hold those delicate tools.
When did Mum begin to have problems walking….?
Why hadn’t I noticed it before?
How could I miss such a fundamental change?
Did degeneration really happen that quickly or did I miss something important because of my busy life?

Since that awakening, Dad has passed away in tragic circumstances and Mum has been ill for many, many months.
I visited her last week after being away for 6 weeks and I almost didn’t recognize her…. I see her feebly walking the passage on her walking frame and I want to shout…. "That’s not my Mother" ……

I spent the day with my siblings today, talking to nameless carers with smiles and opinions and with whom we have to share the most intimate details of our Mothers life.
I came home drained and fractured and I realize that I’m only 20 years younger than my Mother….who by the way is as sharp as a tack in her mind, she has a quirky sense of humor and doesn’t miss a trick…’s just the body….

So I better darn well get on and do all the things I’ve planned.
Top of the list…… a high priority is to buy a gold S type Jag. (that might have to wait a couple of years)
I think I need a neck lift…. do I have the courage.? I reckon it can’t be as bad as having my eyes tattooed….!!!
I have to finish my new book, finish the Bayeux, get my degree.
I have to purchase a new Canon EOS-1Ds Mark III camera that takes photos at 10 frames a second and then visit Morocco and Russia and ride a camel through the desert like Michael Palin.

The biggest dream of all is to be allowed to continue to enjoy my quilting life as much as I do now and share it with all who are kind enough to listen.

One Comment Add yours

  1. Marilyn Clulow says:

    Dear Pam just read your blog about your parents aging , how their minds stayed sharp but their bodies deteriorated so badly. I believe the aging of the physical body accelerates in us through lack of exercise, lack of water and the knowledge that we need to change our nutrition as we grow older. Vitamins and supplements are a must especially digestive enzymes. Particularly as quilters we are essentially a sedentary lot, little physical exercise because we spend too much time sitting at our machines and the deterioration is very gradual. But it is never too late to change and not end up like our parents. Love your site

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