Friday, January 27, 2017

Growing Old Gracefully

Good Morning, All!

I have a life history of not doing anything gracefully, so trying to age with style is becoming a serious challenge.

When I was eight, the teacher and my parents agreed that I should leave Miss Yvonne Greene's School of Dance because whenever I raised one foot off the floor, I fell over sideways.  I also couldn't do a somersault.  Everyone else could, but not me.

At St. Anthony's School, I was part of the choir, but, after the tryout of a new hymn where I held the note a little longer than everyone else, I  was asked to simply mouth the words in the future.

In high school, all the girls wore fifty-yard petticoats under our skirts.  We starched and ironed them every few days to maintain their pouf.  I was running up the stairs to class at the same time the football team was running down to practice and one of the guys stepped on my skirt.  I kept running up, noticing a tickle at my ankles.  It was my petticoat, brought down by that errant step.  All the guys had stopped to watch.  I thought the coolest thing to do was simply step out of it and get to class, but once you're out of it, how do you carry fifty yards of starched netting?  It was around me and above me and under my feet.  I probably looked like something from another planet.  It was not a graceful moment.

Now we're trying to set up our house for downstairs living.  I'm having knee replacement surgery early in March.  We have a wonderful neighbo,r a retired CNA,  who will stay with Ron while I'm in the hospital, then look in on us after I get home.  So, I'm trying to set up everything beforehand so life will be simple for everyone.

Well.  Did you know that if you're having knee replacement surgery, you have to have an okay from the dentist that says there are no infections in your mouth?  I didn't, either.  Apparently, any infection can go straight to the joint after surgery.  I had to have x-rays, an examination, and my teeth cleaned.   Good grief.  The teeth cleaning was like being waterboarded.  There was an air tube and a water tube in my mouth, and a very nasty-looking hooky thing in the hygienist's hand.  I was stoic, but it was ugly.  When she was finally finished, I sat up so eagerly that I kicked over a tray with very noisy stuff on it that flew all over.  I apologized for not being more sedate - and graceful,  The staff laughed and gave me credit for having such a good kick at my age.

We've talked about putting in a half-bath downstairs for ages, and now seems like the time.  My friend Barb, the CNA, is barely five feet tall and I don't want her to have to get Ron up and down the stairs.  The plumber we hired to do the job got pneumonia the day after he came over to give me an estimate, and I haven't seen him since.  Meanwhile, the contents of my pantry, where we're putting the bathroom, is now all over the dining room table while I try to reorganize and rearrange.  The vacuum, carpet shampooer, broom, etc are in the kitchen, and all the shelving I had to take down are at the top of the basement stairs,   I keep tripping over things, and I have no idea where my 4-cup measuring bowl is.

If this post makes no sense you you, I understand.  It all sort of connected in my mind, but that's really not a fruitful place for order and good sense.  It's okay, though.  Maybe grace isn't as much in your style - or in your brain - as in your faith that one day, life will finally come together and you'll feel like you know what you're doing.  I'm still waiting, but I do have faith, so I must be aging gracefully.



22 comments:

  1. It makes sense to me, but, oh, I'm sorry you're going through it! Duane gets his second new knee Wednesday. I hope you and he both have wonderful luck re-ambulating. I especially hope the plumber gets there in a timely manner! All sympathy aside, I'm still snickering about the petticoat. We called them cancans and they were fun, weren't they.

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    1. Loved my petticoats. Took great care of them. And remember a date where it completely took over the front seat of a old Chevy. Have faith I'll be well again soon. Just worried about Ron ad Barb.

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  2. Muriel, everything about you screams grace to me, especially the attitude with which you face everything life throws at you. I'm still laughing about you likening a teeth cleaning to being waterboarded. As for the petticoat story, one of these days I'll be brave enough to blog about the time my underwear fell out the bottom of my pant leg while walking through a Target store. (And while we write romance stories, this anecdote does not fall into that category.) Meanwhile, I'm going to pray for you and Ron and all that you're dealing with.

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    1. Carol, thank you! I want to hear the Target story! And thank you for the prayers. That's always worked best for me than anything.

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  3. Oh, Muriel, like Liz, I hope the bathroom is finished before you go to the hospital, and that all goes as well as possible with the surgery.

    I agree with Carol wholeheartedly about your grace, and I will add that I know you to be a kind, generous, supportive and loving person (and you've given little Claire a wonderful forever home!). We all should aspire to be those things (well, except being Claire's Mom, as she already has an exceptional one!) as we age.

    Liz, I trust Duane's surgery will go smoothly, and I am sending healing thoughts and prayers for a speedy and full recovery.

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    1. Thank you, Kate. I hope the bathroom gets finished, too. It'll be such a good thing for both of us. The neighbors are going to take turns walking Claire. Pray for them, too!

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  4. I agree with Carol, comparing the teeth cleaning to being waterboarded...hilarious!
    Life is messy, and I don't think anyone ever truly knows what they're doing. That said, your humorous attitude toward your current situation is an inspiration to all of us, Muriel.
    I'll keep you in my prayers.

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    1. Thank you, Jill. I appreciate the prayers. We all know that sometimes a sense of humor is all we have. Very important quality in a hero, too.

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  5. I share your less-than-graceful attributes. After years of childhood ballet lessons, I still can't dance. You may not be graceful physically, but you're a tremendous example of grace under pressure. Hope the bathroom, and the mixing bowl, and everything sort themselves out and your surgery goes well. Knee replacement was a huge blessing for my dad, and I know it will be for you as well. Prayers.

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    1. Thank you, Beth. So glad I'm not alone. I'm looking forward to comfort on my walks. Hope the dog and I don't get too fat before we can hit the road again. I'm still walking, but it's not very comfortable. Thank you for the prayers.

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  6. So identify with your version of grace. Bull in a China shop has been my name ever since I knocked over a whatknot cabinet when I was ten. Wishing you the best in your surgery and remodel! I was supposed to have knee surgery back in September. Had a heart cath instead. ;-)

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    1. Oh, Patricia. Did the catheter happen as a result of your checkup for the surgery? Hope you're doing well with it. Sorry about the whatnot cabinet. I'm sure your great books have redeemed you. Thank you!

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  7. Muriel, mercy! I don't know anyone with your grace and dignity---so there! I will pray that your plumber shows up soon and that you get the downstairs bath. Who knew mouth and knee were connected. Is it true that old song-thigh bone connected to the hip bone connected to the... well you get the picture. We all wore those petticoats. Someone told us to starch them with sugar and water as they would hold up better. A dozen of us were out watching a football game at our school when bees decided they loved the smell of our petticoats. That wasn't pretty--a dozen girls running for the school, shedding our petticoats as fast as we could. You take care and keep us updated.

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    1. Roz, that's hilarious about the sugar water starch! If I ever do a 50s nostalgia book, can I have the scene? I recall that by the end of the school year, no amount of starch was going to perk up those slips, so we used to pile them on - 2 or 3, to get that desired pouf. I think the pencil skirt was also popular, but I had a body more appropriate to those fat pens made for arthritics. Fun remembering! Thanks for that.

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  8. LOL! I've never been coordinated, either! My son has taken after me, instead of his much more athletic father. Poor kid. So I understand. And so does my son, I'm sure. :)

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    1. I appreciate the empathy, Patricia. There must be more of us out there than appears when I look around at all the graceful, gorgeous women out there. Let's just carry on. Thanks!

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  9. I'm having sympathy pains for you, Muriel! I've never been graceful, either, and seem to take a tumble at least once a year. I try to think of it as my contribution to my chiropractor's children's college funds. Good luck with the knee surgery, and the upheaval until your new bathroom is installed.

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  10. Thank you, Patricia. (We're going to have to start using the middle names of all our Patricias!) I think our health-care people are grateful for us. I'm sure the knee surgery will go well and I do have the ability to recover quickly. And the mess wouldn't be so bed if I was better organized, but we are what we are. I'm instituting a search this afternoon for my bowl.

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  11. Oh me, oh my! You are having a time! I hope things are back to normal soon and good luck with that pesky knee, Muriel.

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  12. Thank you, Melanie. I'm sure all will be well. And if it isn't - there's always chocolate!

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  13. Sorry I'm late Muriel! Most days, I feel like you. It seems everything that can go wrong, does. But I have faith it will all work out, both for your bathroom and your missing mixing bowl! Good luck with your knee surgery. A friend of mine finally relented and did it and now she wished she'd done it years ago!

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    1. Thanks, LeAnne. That's what I hear from everyone. So looking forward to it being over. I found the bowl! Things are looking up.

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