Saturday, April 4, 2009
"If you put my working body parts together with those of my husband, you still wouldn't have a whole functioning human being," J half-joked the other day. We were sitting in the car and I was gearing myself up to open the door and get out. I've had pain in my left shoulder for a couple of weeks now and certain movements make me uncomfortable indeed.
"Add mine to the mix and you still wouldn't make the grade," I said, not joking at all.
Why is it that everything seems to be falling apart at an accelerated rate? Wasn't it just yesterday I noticed all these wrinkles? These age spotted hands? A sudden crick in the knee? The gray hair? I grunt when I get out of bed in the middle of the night, say ooof when I try to get up off my knees (the same second grader who remarked that I looked older than John McCain sometimes offers to help me get up off the floor). I creak when I bend over and creak again when I straighten up. Little involuntary sounds escape without warning whenever I move too suddenly.
And what's with the forgetfulness? Yesterday J's son Bri brought home a small parakeet, a lovely little blue and yellow thing in a green cage. "What have you named it?" I asked when I first saw it. He said he hadn't given it a name yet. We talked a bit about the bird's period of adjustment with two cats in residence, what to feed the wee thing and where the best place in the house was for a captive bird. Near a window? Hanging from the kitchen ceiling?
"What have you named it?" I asked, and then, "I just asked you that, didn't I?" Bri just looked at me and shook his head.
On recounting this to J, she laughed. "He was probably thinking, 'Oh lordy, I'll have to be taking care of her along with my aging parents.' "
I see that same sort of half-impatient, half-worried look on my own children's faces when I say something I suddenly realize I've said already, and probably a dozen times. This has been going on for years, true ("We know Mom, we know," was a constant refrain in our house), but all of a sudden it seems to be happening more frequently. Maybe it's because I live alone and I can't remember if what I'm saying is new to my audience or something I've only mumbled aloud to myself. I've been playing Scrabble and doing crossword puzzles and taking Mensa tests in an effort to keep my mind nimble and my memory intact - maybe it's because I live alone and I can't remember if what I'm saying is new to my audience or something I've only mumbled aloud to myself.
I want some magic pill to slow things down, to let me age a little more slowly. My daughter recently purchased an iPhone, the little computer in a handheld box that does it all. If man can invent the iPhone, surely s/he can come up with something equally impressive to prolong the life of our most personal computer; what I need is an iPhone brain implant.
photo credit: www.iphonestalk.com