Seniors: Periodic Symbols of Aging

Dec 10th, 2010 | By Dr Jerry D Elrod | Category: Senior Moments Blog

Some are more than symbols.  Some jump right up and slap us in the face.  The most recent example I found was having had my prescription eyewear updated, I found, within just a matter of a few months, after experiencing blurriness of vision, the need to have it checked again.  Having gone through a lifetime of vision issues, including three corneal transplants, I have long grown accustomed to eye alerts. 

This was different, however.  So, to the optician we went.  And there, we discovered that my cornea had shifted, moved, relocated. That was new for me, but something which, after almost 15 years since my last transplant, that might be expected.  A symbol of aging.  And, if that weren’t enough, following on the recent correction, it seems to be doing it again.  Isn’t there anyway to anchor this  proverbial wandering cornea? 

One of the downsides is that driving at night, a periodic symbol of aging, is no longer a wise consideration.  Even daytime driving can have its reminders.  I can no longer depend on my ability to read road signs from a distance most of the time.  

There are other symbols of aging, each of us begins to encounter as we make our journey from day to month to year.  Suddenly we find that what we once did with aplomb, is no longer so easy, so swift, so predictable.

Among the interferences which remind us that aging is a process with consequences:  My joints remind me that some acrimonious revenge is being exacted for long ago indiscretions.  Occasionally, a near fall suggests that imbalance is one of those symbols to watch for.  The increased wrinkles give telling witness to the invasion of aging and all that time spent in the sun many years ago.  The loss of hair, in my case representing the loss of testosterone and radical surgery for prostate cancer, is another of those indicators.  When I look at my pictures of a 50 year ago graduation from college, the symbols leap out in dramatic disguise. 

Periodic symbols make their presence known and slip in here and there with total comfort to create discomfort.  They are real, inevitable, likely, predictable, universal.  They don’t so much ask to be welcomed as to demand to be accepted.  Heading them off with as much wisdom, exercise, attention to need as one can is much of what can be done.  There are those, who even at 90, are still plugging and throwing javelins.  Congratulations to them.  I am content to skip a rock across a pond, to walk the dogs a couple of miles, to attempt to  keep myself moving.  Life is to be loved and preserved for so long as we can.  Keeping our bodies in shape is one of the ways we accomplish that.



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  1. Seniors: Periodic Symbols of Aging | Senior Citizen Journal…

    Here at World Spinner we are debating the same thing……

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