Tag Archives: retirement health

Colonoscopy fun! — Wait, what???!!!

A couple of years ago, I had my first colonoscopy. It was a routine event, and happened just because I had reached that “age” when it was recommended by my doctor. So, I drank the huge bottle of camel slobber, and quite literally, went about my business. It wasn’t all that bad, really. Actually, not too much different than when I eat shrimp and drink Bloody Marys in the same meal…TOO MUCH INFORMATION! I apologize–I digress…

Because I am somewhat a huge chicken, the nurse graciously offered to give me a knock you out dose of foo-foo juice, which would send me happily off into la-la land. With hubs at my side to support me, I heard her ask him his name. She wanted to write his name on my wrist band so that she would know who to call in the waiting room when the procedure was finished.  And just before I floated off into a drug induced nap, I heard my smart-assed husband reply,

“Just write ‘Christian Grey!'”

In what seemed like only seconds (anesthesia works like that, you know) I found myself awakening in a room filled with chuckling people.

So you see, for about a day’s worth of preparatory pain in the ass, you too can find the humor in your colonoscopy.  It’s really not that big of a deal, and at least in my case, makes for a great story.So why, oh why, am I choosing to tell you about my colonoscopy??? Because at this very minute, my best friend is sitting in a waiting room at the hospital while the surgeons remove a mass from her husband’s colon.  All signs are hopeful that it will not be malignant.  It could have turned into a huge problem.  But he was a big boy and went and had the colonoscopy which very well may have saved his life.

So I would encourage you to do yourself a favor, and schedule the appointment that you most likely have been putting it off.  Have some fun with it!   Just imagine how awesome it is to wake up to someone telling you…

Mr. Grey will see you now!


When the Heck Did This Happen???

If it has not already happened to you, you need to get mentally prepared.  At some point along your Encore Voyage this WILL happen to you.  It will come as a shock.  You will not expect it to happen.  It will cause concern – nay, even some distress.

The events that happen occur at different ages, and under a wide variety of circumstances, but will look something like this:

You get down on the floor to fetch dog’s ball which has rolled under the sofa, and YOU CAN’T GET UP! 

You do a modest amount of yard work, perhaps pulling weeds, and the next morning, your lower back screams, “WHAT THE HELL HAVE YOU DONE!?”

You are on a ski hill, all set to enjoy a beautiful run through the cedar trees, and suddenly, you’re sucking wind, and you find yourself thinking, “GOOD LORD, PLEASE LET ME MAKE IT TO THE LODGE!”

And you find yourself questioning life:

When did it happen that I can no longer do 10 pushups?  Or 5…Or 1?

When did it become a problem to park too far away from an event?

When did it become impossible to stand on one foot to put on my jammies?

When did picking up a dropped item from the floor BECOME AN EVENT???

Sadly, this phenomenon happens to each of us eventually.  And then, the real question becomes:

Are you gonna Cowboy UP 2


Yes, while we know that none of us gets out of this life alive, we have considerable control of how we react to the changes along the way.  A brisk walk here, a yoga class there, and lots of healthy eating in the middle certainly will help to fend off at least a part of the aging process. Surely it must be helpful to attempt as many activities as possible that will help me to stay active, vibrant and healthy.  A fellow blogger recently posted that

“Attitude is the difference
between an ordeal and an adventure.”

I, for one, am planning on fighting like crazy so that I can continue having adventures without too many ordeals! How about you??? Are you planning to Cowboy Up?


Cover photo credit: Julia Ceasar – Unsplash

I Blame Kelly Ripa

Kelly Ripa

Yep, That’s my story…I blame Kelly Ripa for this, or maybe Robin Roberts!  Have you seen the arms on either of these chicks?  They are gorgeous!  I dream of being able to sport sleeveless tops in the summertime showing off the tight cut between my biceps and my shoulders – uh, huh…and then she woke up.
But not being the type to give up without a fight, I headed off to the gym this week with the intention of getting back into lifting some weights.  (I’ve been a bit of a slacker since Christmas.)  So with Kelly and Robin and summertime in the back of my head – weeeellllll, let’s just say I went a bit crazy.  Just for the record, I kept hearing the trainer in my ear, whispering “Finish Strong!”  And strong I was – a little bit too heavy on the weights, a few too many reps and now…

I Can’t Bend My Arms!

No seriously…I’m not exaggerating here!  Not only won’t they bend all the way, they won’t straighten out either!  You can’t even believe the problems this causes!  I struggled to get my makeup on, because my hands couldn’t touch my face!  I couldn’t do my own hair, and had to get the hubs to take out my pony tail!  And just let your imagination run wild while thinking about putting a bra on the sisters!  My triceps are actually swollen!  Puffy elbows – Now there’s a look we all strive for!

It got me wondering if there’s ever a time when a boomer girl should simply give up and accept what the good Lord gave her.  I’ve seen plenty of pretty classy looking retired ladies who seem to be fairly content in their own skin.  Am I being vain because I want to be able to rock those outfits that I see in the mall?  Or am I just afraid of aging and I’m trying (perhaps a bit to hard) to get and stay healthy for as long as possible?  And, of course, there is still the whole dressing question to consider…”When do I have to stop dressing ‘too young’?”  I don’t feel 50+…I feel about 30.  I think I just don’t want to grow up!

So tell me your experiences with this slippery slope of body image, health, fitness and wardrobe.  I’m curious about how others have navigated this part of the voyage!


Wanted – Personal Trainer for Boomers!

Note:  There would be a photo with this post, but I can’t lift my arms to hold the camera!


Throughout my teaching career, I spent a great deal of time on the floor – sitting chris-cross applesauce with a group of littles, reading aloud, or helping fifth graders create some masterful project.  Hopping up and down, running out on the playground, climbing, stretching, lifting, moving…all part of the teacher job description.


How is it that, within a few short years, it has changed so drastically?  I used to be able to hop right up from the floor, but now…not so much!  I used to be able to run with my students in a game of kickball.  Now, the very thought makes me suck wind! As my retired friends and I contemplate this situation, we always come to the same burning question…


When the hell did this happen???


In an attempt to battle the inevitable aging process, I have made (I thought) a reasonable effort to get/stay in some sort of shape.  I don’t work too hard at it, but I joined a gym and I make an effort to keep “old lady status” at bay.   I try to go down there with some regularity, although I am by no means a gym rat.  A little lifting here, a little biking there.  In my mind, I congratulate myself for my efforts to keep up with the younger set.  But since Christmas, I have struggled to get rid of the Christmas candy ass weight gain, so when last week I saw a cardboard display on the gym desk with a sign that said,


“Sign up to win 2 sessions with a personal trainer!”


I thought, “Hell yeah, that’s a good idea!” – and besides, I never win anything!  What I should have been smart enough to realize is that this sign really said, “Please give me your contact information so that I may call you and convince you how badly you need to spend a gazillion dollars on a training package.  Come on down and I’ll show you how.”


Here’s how it went:  I met Jen (the trainer) at the gym at 3:00.  In the interest of full disclosure, I made sure she knew up front that I had no intention of buying a package of training sessions.  Now, I don’t know if this was a good idea or a bad idea.  Perhaps she wanted to show me how much harder I would work with the guidance of a personal trainer, or maybe, I just pissed her off and she was thinking, “I’ll show you………”

In any case, this little twenty-something girl, who didn’t weigh 100 lbs. soaking wet, and who actually wore perfectly drawn on eyeliner to the gym – worked my ass off!  Even after I had tried to explain to her the things at the gym that I like to do, (weights, treadmill, bike) and the things that I’m not doing for anyone (these D cups do not jump rope!) she put me through a workout that turned my legs to Jello.  You know it’s bad when, after hobbling to the car to go home, you cannot lift your leg high enough to clear the car door threshold.


I found myself thinking that there must be some happy medium.  I understand the concept of calories in-calories out.  I understand that a little bit of muscle soreness is just an indication that you are using your body.  But really???  I almost couldn’t get up off the toilet this morning!  My quads scream when I try to get up from a chair, and I’d love to put a photo with this post, but my arms have the weakies so bad that I can’t hold the camera without wobbling!  In my heart of hearts I know there must be a workout regimen that falls somewhere between

Take a leisurely stroll around the block


Work out so frickin’ hard that the sweat is stinging my eyes, I can feel my pulse in my ears, and I hate your guts!


I don’t blame Jen, the trainer.  How is she to know what 50+ feels like?  Maybe I need to find a 50+ trainer?  I know that I will continue to do something to try to stay physically strong as I add birthday candles.  But I’m just not sure I’m believing “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger,” right now.  ‘Cause she dang near did!