I have no idea how the change in my body occurred. I was minding my own business when it happened one day. When the aches and pains happened a second time I decided to go visit my doctor, an unsympathetic man about my age who feels I overreact to everything. I think he’ll never forgive me for inquiring if I would need hospice care after I had my appendix removed.
When I told this doctor of mine about the aches and pains in my knees and back he did what most doctors love to do more than play golf, he ran tests. So many different types of tests I felt a new condo in the Bahamas was now affordable to him because of me. When I went to get the results of these many tests he gave me the shock of my life.
“There’s really nothing wrong with you. You’re just getting older and are a little more prone to having aches and pains in your knees and back.”
“Well, just do something to make it stop and we’ll call it even.”
“Take some aspirin when it hurts and if it gets too bad just take it easy.”
I was furious.
“That’s it? All those years of medical school and that’s the best you can do is tell me to take aspirin? My grandmother could’ve told me that and unlike you I never enabled her to purchase a condo in the Bahamas.”
“As if you don’t know.”
I walked out of the doctor’s office a bit upset and claiming I’d never return for his substandard medical care, which made it a typical visit for me.
When I shared the details of my doctor’s diagnosis with my wife she just shrugged her shoulders and said nonchalantly “I know what you mean I get achy too. Guess we’re just getting older and are going to have aches and pains like our parents.”
“Traitor. I bet you’re booked on a flight to the Bahamas. Aren’t you?”
“What are you talking about?”
I knew I would never be like my parents. They complained about things before they happened, when they happened and for years after they happened. I’d always prided myself on not having the whining, complaining gene passed on to me. I can’t imagine what my life would be like if that had happened.
Upon hearing of her father’s medical dilemma my daughter reacted like a demon had possessed her.
“Yep, you’re getting older Dad. Pretty soon we’re going to have to put you in an old folk’s home for really annoying dads. I wouldn’t worry about my knees and back if I were you because I think your mind went a long time ago.”
I do hate to dispense punishment on my child but there are circumstances that require swift discipline and this was one of them.
“Don’t forget lovely daughter of mine that when you’re looking at your parents you’re actually looking at yourself in just a matter of time.”
It was a cruel thing to say but I felt I had to say it. The poor girl didn’t come out of shock for almost two days.
Since it seemed as if the world wasn’t listening to me I decided to take matters into my own hand. I wasn’t going to let some little aches and pains stop me from doing anything and continued with my regular activities and then some. That was when I realized my body has developed a bit of an attitude. It refused to do what I wanted and gave me even more aches and pains. As I gulped down some aspirin before resting on our couch I told my wife if my body would just stop this ache and pain stuff everything would be okay. It obviously was not me who was the problem in this situation but my body’s attitude about the whole thing.
“I think you’re losing what few remaining functioning brain cells you may have, she said. “Quit acting crazy right now and there may be hope.”
She then walked away shaking her head while muttering something about how crazy my father has always been.
My friends share similar stories about their bodies developing attitudes as age slowly takes a grip on them. One friend who could eat huge amounts of food without gaining weight said his body is now making him pay. He said that these days a mere glance at a doughnut can cause him to gain five pounds. Another friend was telling me his eyes which had worked so well for so long now need glasses. I refuse to think about how gray has mysteriously appeared on the top of my head because I’ve been too occupied with my aches and pains.
As a proud member of the baby boom generation I know exactly how I’m going to handle this aging stuff. I’m going to live in a constant state of denial and refuse to acknowledge I’m not still young. I’ll refuse to recognize the natural changes of my body and play victim to anyone who doesn’t see things my way.
We may not be known as the greatest generation but we’ve always worked hard at trying to find a way to beat the system