My Visitor

I always keep a section of my back door open. It is nice to see folks passing by. Yesterday, someone stopped outside, but all I could see was the top of their head. They lingered so I opened the door to find an elderly, very petite lady standing there. She had a lot to say.
I admired the gold locket around her neck and her eyes filled with tears as she told me (in Italian, but I think I understood most of it), that it was given to her by her husband who was no longer alive.
She admired my kitchen, and was fascinated with my large digital photo frame on the wall, which she thought was a television.
I think she invited me to go with her to her home, but wasn’t sure. We talked as best we could for ten minutes or so, and then she continued her journey down the steps. I watched her and wondered how old she was. I think the hills and steps and winding alleyways of Colledimezzo keep folks fit. I hope it works for me too.
Maybe next time she stops by my Italian will be better.
I’m working on it.

Staying Alive – 2020

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It has been a bumpy year! Who’d have thought we’d be fighting a pandemic, along with all of the other trials and tribulations this year has brought. I’m not naming any, because we’re all sick and tired of hearing about them.
Through all of this mess, I’ve sold a house, sent my personal possessions to Italy and sold most of my furniture. Not an easy task, but one that had to be done.
This sixty three year old heart has had palpitations. This sixty three year old brain has been working overtime, and keeping me awake. Sometimes I wondered if I’d make it to Italy.
Now, we’re almost there. I have a “final day” at work on the calendar, flights aren’t booked yet, but will be soon.
I look at the picture of my retirement village and it keeps me alive. Three months from now, I’ll be there….

Staying alive!

Getting Old

 

When you’re young you sometimes ache, but shrug it off,
It’s from running, or dancing or simply having fun!

When you’re old you worry, you stress, you dwell,
On the pain, is it my heart, an aneurysm, will I die?

When you’re young tiredness sets in and you sleep,
Your body repairs itself, your brain renews, reborn each day.

When you’r old, it’s extreme fatigue, your whole body tires,
You lie awake and worry that every breath is your last.

How long does it take to get old?
The blink of an eye, two shakes of a lambs tail!

Enjoy your young days, live life to the full, because,
You’re getting older and soon today will be a beautiful memory!

 

When I could SLEEP!

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When did sleep become such a rare commodity? When I got old I suppose!
I remember the days I could sleep until noon. Saturday nights at a night club, Sunday mornings in bed, woken up by the smell of mum’s Sunday roast cooking in the oven. Those were the days.
Now, if I’m lucky enough to get to sleep within an hour of going to bed. I’m awake at 4:00 AM and gremlins crawl into my brain. They wake up my stress areas and make me think about things I don’t want to.

Life was much better when I could sleep!

Keep Stepping!

Keep on SteppingA couple of years ago my husband gave me his Nike Fuel fit band. I loved it. He’d moved onto something better, but the Fuel was great for me. It was simple, tracked my steps and it was also comfortable and easy to wear….until they stopped making it. I’d become addicted to tracking my steps, which isn’t a bad thing, so purchased a Fitbit. UGH! I tried three different types over the last couple of years and they were nowhere near as good as the fuel. Finally, the last one I owned slipped off my wrist in the supermarket and I didn’t even try to find it! I was over it.

Unfortunately, as sad as it is, I stopped making the extra effort to exercise and walk. Nothing was holding me accountable. Yes, I admit it, I was cheating myself. Yesterday, determined to get back on track, I bought an Apple watch. It seemed the most logical thing to do. I have a Macbook Pro, iPhone and iPad (yes Apple are taking over the world), and they’re so easy to use. So far so good. After one day I’m in competition with myself to get in my daily steps, use my elliptical and generally beat the machine on my wrist!

Never thought I’d need to feel accountable to a computer…..but I am. I’m not ashamed of it either. I’ll use what I can to keep myself fit.

Keep stepping folks!

 

Retirement and the Sleep Factor.

You must all have noticed how great you feel when you wake up after a really good night’s sleep. As slumber drifts from your body and mind, you feel good, ready to handle anything the day throws at you. You’re rested and in control.

So why is sleep so elusive? This past week has been awful! Much too stressful, long hours at work, followed by coming home and worrying if I’d got everything done. Each night after going to bed, I’d remember something important I’d missed. That paid to my sleep.

Last night was the first night in almost a week that I slept long and hard, and woke up feeling refreshed. If only I felt like this every day. I think my massage and reflexology helped, but that’s a luxury I can only occasionally afford. How do I manage to sleep on a regular basis? I sleep well on vacation, because there’s nothing to worry about.

I’m wondering if perhaps its time to retire.

Comments anyone? Advice?sleepless01

Aging – The Dammit Post!

Now don’t get me wrong, we all have to age! I’ve been healthy most of my life, but the last five years has been an issue, and its making me cranky!

Monday morning, rise and shine, Mondays are always tough, but I got to work and everthing was going smoothly.  First three hours were a dream, and then the pain started. An unusual type of pain across my belly, tight, but not cramping. Oh, I’ll work through it. By 2 pm I knew there was no way.

I’m off folks, heading for the Doctor’s office.

Jumped in my car and knew the doctor wasn’t going to do it. Headed to ER instead, they must have been expecting me, there was a parking space right outside.

“Deep breaths, you can do this.”

Walked to the lady behind the desk. “Hi, I think I need help.” (sniffling tears of fear)

“Whats wrong?”

“Belly pain, chest pain, really bad, can’t stand it, was going to the doctors, (more tears), but felt like I needed the ER!

They took my info (and of course Health Insurance) and admitted me. Taken to a freezing room where they started taking my vitals and asking me questions. Then there were CT scans, then I was vomiting, then they gave me a GI (Maalox and Novacain) cocktail and I vomited some more.

“Is your back hurting, you seem like you can’t lie still,” the attending said.

“I can’t sit still because my stomach is a sheet of pain, I can hardly stand it. It’s the reason I’m here.”

“Oh dear! Lets see what we can do.”

I won the golden ticket, a room in the hospital (help), first time in a hospital in 32 years and the last time was to give birth!

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WHAT HAVE I DONE?

Getting Old is NOT for wimps!

growingoldI’m 59 years young, feel pretty healthy, although I do get tired a little easier now. It might help if I slowed down a little. Never!

I remember when I went for a physical and came out wondering why I’d wasted a couple of hours just to be told I was fit and healthy. Wish those days were back. My last annual check up ended in my having to take a stress test. It wasn’t fun, I was hooked up to weird equipment while riding a stationary bike. They monitored my heart on an ultrasound machine. I tearfully remembered the ultrasounds I had when I was pregnant with my daughter. Those days are long gone…I miss them.

Well now on to a cardiologist!

How do I feel about that? DETERMINED! I am determined not to be given a regiment of pills. Instead I’m starting a healthier diet (if I eat much healthier I’ll fade away). Red meat is a treat for a very special occasion now. More veggies (I already eat my weight in them), Elk instead of beef, chicken instead of pork, etc. etc. I’m already gluten intolerant, learned that earlier this year. Poor me! No wait a minute, lucky me, I’m still alive and I’m going to get healthier with each passing day. Yes, growing old isn’t for wimps, but I’m no wimp and age comes to everyone.

 

That Gluten Thing!

Over three months Gluten Free now! The difference to my health is amazing. Not that I was ill, just didn’t feel great! Now my stomach is so much better, even though I’m sure it’s still healing. To be properly tested for adult celiac I have to eat gluten again, not going to do that. I’m going to spare you the details about my bodily functions, but they are all back to normal again. I don’t need any medications, just a sensible gluten-free diet an a good probiotic regime.

I’m 59 and have eaten bread and other gluten products my whole life. I started feeling ill about three years, ago. Awful stomach discomfort, which would stay with me for two or three months and then seemingly go away. The doc gave me antibiotics (which made it worse) as well as other medications. They tested for ulcers, hyper pylori infections, bacterial infections, kidney infections, you name it, I was tested. Poked, prodded and bruised with blood draws until I could take it no more. Finally I saw a really good gastroenterologist who listened. She didn’t order more tests, just talked to me. Between us we figured it out. THANK GOD!

Anyway, here I am, gluten-free, feeling better and asking anyone out there in the same position if you have any good gluten free bread recipes? I’ve always made my own bread, and don’t want to start buying it now. I can go without bread, it’s not the end of the world, but……..trying to cut gluten out of my husband’s life too!

 

Gluten Free January!

January has both flown and lasted FOREVER! Christmas seems so long ago, but only yesterday. Is this what happens when you get older? Or maybe its just peculiar to January. Both myself and my son-in-law had a Birthday smack bang in the middle of the month. Nice for my son-in-law, but not for me. I’ve never liked my Birthdays for reasons I’ll not bore you with, but I put on a brave face and get through them.

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I know just how he feels!

I found this photo on Deserts with Benefits and had to share it.

If you follow my blog, you’ll remember I haven’t been well. I got tired of CT scans, needles and being prodded and poked so after talking to a very matter-of-fact gastroenterologist I decided to give up gluten. Since January 1st, I’ve been completely gluten-free. After a few days I felt better, much more awake. I was both thrilled and excited at the difference and expected miracles to follow. The miracles never happened. Another two weeks passed and I wondered if I’d willed myself to feel better because I wanted an instant cure.

Then early last week I realized that when I touched my stomach in the places that had been tender, it didn’t hurt anymore. It didn’t feel uncomfortable and bloated. I looked at my reflection in the mirror (not a pretty sight), but prettier than it looked a couple of months earlier. My tummy was no longer swollen.

Maybe gluten is the problem, I know I have a long way to go before I know for sure, but one month gluten-free has certainly made me feel better. My energy is returning.

I haven’t bought ‘gluten free’ breads, crackers, cookies etc. I gave up processed food a long time ago. Instead I’ve eaten much more fruit and veg, baked with almond, coconut and semolina flour and bought rice noodles instead of pasta. It hasn’t really been a hardship. When I used semolina and almond flour to make my husbands favorite cookies I didn’t tell him. He took a bite and looked at me.

“These taste good,” he said, “what did you do different?”

I think cutting gluten from my diet has been a good thing. Not out of the woods yet, but I can see the sun piercing the trees. I’ll give you an update one month from now. Fingers crossed I’ll be healthy and full of energy. New lifestyle for 2016!

 

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