Diagnosis: I’m getting old

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It used to take a strenuous workout, beautiful sunset or the sight of my children to take my breath away.

Now all I need to do is bend down and tie my shoe.

What this means is that things that used to be effortless, like painting toenails and pulling on socks, have all become somewhat of a chore if undertaken at the wrong time of day.

It’s not that I can’t do these things, it’s just that now I have to really think about it. Possibly even mentally prepare myself. There may even be a sharp intake of breath.

Diagnosed old

Back in the day, I used to wear 3-inch heels daily. I trotted around the halls of my high school wearing this, ankle socks and a denim miniskirt. Regardless of my sins against good taste, and fashion, I usually managed to walk quite gracefully and make it look fairly effortless. Forgive me, it was the 1980s — I blame ZZ Top videos.

The other day, I literally hurt my foot walking barefoot across a smooth wood floor. There I was, just minding my own business, taking a few steps and crack — or more like, crackle.

My entire foot shot starbursts of pain, from standing! I limped for two days. I honestly have no idea what I could’ve done.

Before this, my entire weekend had consisted of high school graduation parties. Perhaps I hurt myself walking briskly to the cake table?

I don’t consider myself terribly old, but more things hurt than they used to. Two years ago, I developed back pain that rarely goes away. We spent time and money to pronounce me: old. The doctor prescribed exercise — clearly a quack.

Nightlife

I like the nightlife. I just like it earlier than I used to. I like it to wind down at about 10 p.m.

A friend and I sat watching fireworks recently. As it turns out, you have to set those off after dark for maximum effect. While they would’ve worked better for my schedule at noon, we ended up staying up later than usual to enjoy them.

In the wee hours of after 10 p.m., we found ourselves surrounded by teens and young adults cuddled on tailgates and leaning against light poles, while toddlers and grade school-aged kids danced manically to the music of the band playing nearby.

The air crackled with excitement and patriotic fervor and all I could think was that I was really looking forward to a good night sleep.

Sleeping in

Sleep, once the bane of my young existence, was now elevated to hobby status. Gosh, I love to sleep in. It is said you are only as old as you feel. I am officially “I’m exhausted and everything hurts” years old.

Today my childhood punishments have become my most relaxing evenings. No phone calls? No party? Staying home? Early bedtime? Sign me up.

I still enjoy life and embrace living. What I don’t love is too much enjoyment all at once. Where once I could socialize endlessly, now I need some downtime.

A friend recently opined that people who like to party and go out every night just have yet to discover a really good chair.

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Warm, witty and just a wee bit warped, Kymberly Foster Seabolt is a native of Kent, Ohio, who survived childhood exposure to disco and grew up to marry and move to the country. Her column weaves her special brand of humor with poignant, entertaining, and honest portrayals of parenting, marriage, and real life. She currently lives in northeastern Ohio with her husband, two children, two dogs, two cats, and numerous dust bunnies who wish to remain nameless.

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