This blog will be about change. I’m 69. That’s old. But I don’t feel old. And I want a ‘cliff’ ending. None of this languishing about in a nursing home, for years and years.Whether I live to be 70 or 103, I want ALL the life possible until I kick that bucket.
I’m allowing, oh, 48 hours or so for that ‘kick the bucket’ process to occur. Yes, that sounds about right. Up until then I wanted to be actively engaged in life.
But how to make that happen?
I’m starting at a low ebb. Two solid months of back-to-back company preceded by another two months of serious illness for my Significant Other. But during all of that chaos, I’ve had time to think. To plan how I really want to live. I’ve got about 10 months until my next birthday. It is time to start. Now!
Andrew Weill’s great new book, Spontaneous Happiness outlines it pretty succinctly. Physical: exercise and eat whole foods. Spiritual: meditate, be nice to people and the planet. Mind: Learn something new. Be aware of who and where you are.
For me, that starts with books. I’m a reader. When I start something new, the books come first.
Recipe books are no problem. I’ve got literally dozens of cookbooks tracing my life development through Haute Cuisine (Julia Child & provincial French–the 3-days-to-prepare-a-meal kind), through the 70s hippie (Small Planet) to all the allergy cookbooks (Gluten Free Gal), and up through the current vegan trends (Rice and Spice, Dr. Furman). Problem is, of course, that I don’t like to cook. So whatever I do has to be simple.
I don’t like to exercise, either. I do walk about 3 times a week, with a friend. And our neighborhood is hilly. So some exercise there. I am thinking about including some yoga tapes and stretching in the morning. Maybe walking on days when my friend is busy elsewhere? Maybe.
Mindfulness would be a good thing. I do know how to mediate, but don’t.
Vitamins. Don’t take any. Salads. Don’t eat any.
I am a stress eater. I like fast food, caffeine, chocolate, and ice cream in that order. Given the events of the last 4 months, my weight is about 24 pounds higher than it should be. My lady doctor is saying for the first time that I need to start watching my cholesterol.
I still work, part-time, but am an introvert by choice, so don’t have scads and scads of friends. More would probably help. That good ol’ social support thing.
I get bored without mental stimulus, so am toying with the idea of learning Chinese, just for the puzzle of it. That and getting over the mental block I have against playing the piano. I do have one. Right now it serves as a good shelf for piling papers next to the treadmill that is useful for hanging loose sweatshirts.
I guess the bottom line is that I don’t want to change. I like my life, imperfect as it is. This body has served me well, and to change would be to acknowledge that indeed, someday I will die. That doesn’t frighten me. But being incapacitated does. I don’t want to go there. Period.
So first will be to chart what is actually happening. My Id will rebel, but I’ll sneak up on it. “You don’t have to change anything at all, just let me keep track of it.” Uhuh. I don’t it’s convinced.
But as Yoda said, “There is no try, there is only do.” Keep tuned as I start to journal what is actually happening in my life. I have a feeling it will be prove to be a challenging, back-sliding, life changing journey.