On being sixty one…..


I hit my sixties nearly two years ago and unlike previous decades, the best of which was definitely my fifties, I am really beginning to feel my age and I am becoming increasingly aware of my mortality as in, “shit – only another twenty odd years left, where the hell did that go?”

My body is falling apart – the proverbial has finally hit the fan.

When I get up in the mornings, my ankles hurt, my knees hurt, my hips hurt and until I get going I struggle down my steep stairs to the kitchen feeling more like I am ninety five never mind sixty one. Ibuprofen has become my BFF still – at least my friends have stopped telling me I`m a hypochondriac. When I walk my dog, my back hurts. Thank God for park benches.

A friend I hadn`t seen for a long time recently asked me how I was. I said, “Well – apart from the high blood pressure, arthritis, cataract, increasing deafness, tinnitus, carpel tunnel syndrome and a tendency to store water in my body which eventually results in my feet looking like cartoon feet, I`m bloody great thanks, how are you?”

My age has defined me by the changes I have made to my choices. I no longer feel the urge to break the speed limit when I am driving, I don`t hang out of the car window anymore and shout, “you stupid wanker!” to stranger drivers who have cut me up. Having been single for two years I find to my surprise that I can actually survive reasonably happily without sex in my life, something I never would have accepted even a few years ago. (I can live without sex but not without my Kindle, ha ha ha.)

Now it doesn`t bother me so much that I remain overweight and I buy clothes and shoes that are comfortable rather than fashionable. I don`t care if my lumps and bumps show. Hey – that`s me you`re looking at.

I do a lot of word searching, I say things like, “you know, thingummybob, what`sisface, oh it`s on the tip of my tongue, if I don`t think about it it`ll drop into my mind….. ”

I suppose there are some benefits to being in my sixties, for example, I can invite my friends round for a dinner party and I don`t have to knock on my neighbours` door and say, “we`ll be turning the music down at twelve.” I can say “no thanks” to invites and events that I don`t wish to attend and when anyone asks me why I can say, “because I don`t want to go. I`m getting old!” Hah!

My daughter recently brought it home to me that I am in my sixties when she sent me a text at 9:30pm which read, “mum are you still up?”

Party on.  

5 responses

  1. I understand entirely Helen…you have taken the words out of my mouth as my mum says. Your writing is as young and alive as ever mind xxx

  2. What I meant was…i do have very similar experiences of being almost 62!!! My back kills when i go for walks with the dogs Helen and went to oseopath yesterday – got a spinal curve etc.Same trouble with my ears – drives me mad on a bad day, knees ache – and when i wake up in the night me fingers are stiff. Two wonky eyes….
    Great fun!!