Posts Tagged With: aging

Day 1392: Depends

What’s my attitude about life?  Depends on what’s going on around me, how I’m perceiving things, and people I depend on.

How am I feeling as I recover from my recent open heart surgery?  Depends on how much sleep I’m able to get, which depends on how much pain I’m having.

How do I answer questions from myself and from others? Depends on the question, my attitude, my experience, and what I know.

How  do  I come up with a title and topic for each of my daily blog posts?  Depends on what’s happened the day before, usually.

How do I decide which pictures to share here?  Depends on which ones I think you might like.











How well do I quote other people in this blog?  Depends on my memory and what they have to say.  Yesterday, the dependably hilarious, brilliant, and charming Mel Brooks responded to a question from the audience as follows:

Question:  Boxers or briefs?

Mel Brooks:  Depends!

My choice of music for each post depends on several factors. Here‘s the theme song from Blazing Saddles  — the movie Mel Brooks showed and discussed yesterday:


Will you comment on today’s blog post?  That probably depends on what you have to say.

I depend on others to create every blog post and on you to read them, so many thanks to Mel Brooks, to my neighbor Karen for driving me yesterday to a realtor’s open house AND to see Mel Brooks, and to you — of course! — on whom I depend more than you know.


Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 39 Comments

Day 149: To Tweet or Not to Tweet (is that the question?)

(This post is dedicated to my good friend, Newell.)

Like most people my age (I assume), I resist some new things.

Like most people (I assume), I resist some new things.

Resistance to new things is pretty common, isn’t it? I mean, it would make sense, that we would resist something unknown.

Change engenders both hope and fear. How could it not?

I’m not sure whether I’m any more resistant to new things now, than I was when I was younger.

I can’t remember!

That’s not exactly correct. I can remember a lot of things. I’m just not sure how to interpret all that data, regarding this particular question: Am I more resistant to change — now that I’m older — than I was before?

My guess, right now, is that I’m more resistant to change if I have some fears about the changes.

And the more secure I am in my competence and skills in adapting to change, the less fear I will have, and the less I will resist a change.

And, actually, dear reader, I’ve been thinking lately that the trend, for me, is to become MORE secure as I get older.

I confess: I like getting older. Whenever somebody asks me, what age would you like to be? I always answer, “This one.” I never name an earlier one.

This makes me feel weird, to tell you the truth. Because I hear so much noise, out there, regarding fear of aging. And I understand it. I do! Because the more we age, the closer to (the big D) we are.

(I didn’t want to freak people out, by using the D-word.)

But, for some reason, aging doesn’t make me feel closer to death, for the most part. (Ooops! I used the d-word.)

Actually, I know the reason. It’s because I was born with a heart “defect”, and I got that message loud and clear from people around me: You probably won’t live very long.

And about two years ago (when I was 58 years old), a doctor finally said to me, “You know what, Ann? I think you’re going to live as long as anybody else.”

So this unusual life of mine has given me several gifts (I assume):

  • I am often in the moment.
  • I am grateful for being alive (almost always, although I lose track of that sometimes)).
  • I enjoy aging.

Just so you don’t think my mind is filled with rainbows and unicorns, I will say this: I’m still afraid of death (although I’m working on that). And there are down sides to being as much in the moment as I am. (I have trouble planning ahead, for one.)

However, I do see My Unusual Life as bringing many more gifts than drawbacks.

Now, some of you, at this point, may be thinking:

What the hell is the deal with the title of this post? What does THIS have to do with Tweeting?

Good questions, astute readers!

Well, my intent when I started writing this was to discuss how I have resisted getting on Twitter, and to wonder whether this reflected (1) resistance to change, in general and (2) resistance to a (relatively) new-fangled technology, from me, an older person.

But, as Dr. Seuss said ….


Thanks for reading, everybody.

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Day 100: I Confess

This title “I Confess” came to me this morning, when I was trying to shape today’s blog post in my mind.  I knew I wanted to write  something about (1) uncharacteristically missing a second planning meeting for my high school reunion last night and (2)  doing a first presentation at work, which I’ve written about here (as a way to manage my anxiety about doing it).

I think I used the words “I confess”  in yesterday’s blog post, when I was revealing something that felt riskier to me — something I felt some shame about it.

Shame is something I’ve been particularly aware of, during this Year of Living Non-Judgmentally.  As I’ve written about  before, shame is different from guilt, as follows:  Guilt is feeling like you’ve done something wrong, where shame is a more all-encompassing feeling — that there is something wrong with you.

Last night,  I realized, horror-struck, that I had totally missed the second planning meeting of the reunion, when I noticed, at 8:30, this e-mail which had been sent to me:

Ann, are you on your way?

And I wasn’t.  In a flash, I realized several things:

  • The second meeting, which I had been looking forward to, was going on THEN.
  • The date wasn’t in my iPhone calendar, although I remembered distinctly entering the next date at the first meeting.

Those were the facts.

And I sent an e-mail back and tried to phone the person who had sent it, Peter …  but no dice.  The e-mail and the phone message I left included apologies and several types of “I confess!” statements, including this one: “I suck!”

Then, I fought the automatic and distorted thoughts that come up for me — in waves — until I did hear back from Peter.  Those thoughts included some rather uncomfortable visualizations of people at the meeting waiting for me, puzzled, and then annoyed. (That’s what the mind is for, apparently, visualizing people whom you fear you’ve disappointed, being pissed at you.) (I should speak for myself. There are parts of MY mind dedicated to that kind of processing)

I also imagined people sitting at the meeting thinking things like this about me:  “Boy!  Is SHE unreliable!” “What a space shot!” and other variations of “She sucks!”

Those thoughts involved mind reading what people were thinking. They also involved my over-estimating my importance, and I had some shame about that, too.


I did use some “antidotes,” to challenge those uncomfortable thoughts and visualizations.  But it was difficult. I had problems distracting myself. I had a pit in my stomach, until I heard back. And the e-mail said, “Don’t worry about it.”

Good advice, Peter.  I agree.  (Actually, that would have been a cool title for today’s post, too. “Don’t worry about it.” Maybe a future one.)

Arrghh!  I’m looking at the time and I want to finish this post off before I leave.

Here’s what I want to say. “I confess” indicates that Shame is in the house.  And here’s a list, that comes to mind now, of things I feel ashamed about these days:

  • That I forget things (like the reunion meeting date and my friend Jeanette’s birthday). Honestly, I don’t think I’m forgetting things that much more than I used to, and I am probably forgetting things these days because I’m so friggin’ busy at work, but there is a new way to “tell the story” of my forgetfulness now.  I just turned 60. I’m getting older. It’s a challenge, now, not to think of forgetting in a different way– as a sign of aging. (And aging, my dear readers, is not something that is really valued in this world, for the most part, is it?)
  • That I think about my own importance to others.
  • That I don’t love my iPhone, because even though I’ve had it for several months, I still screw up doing things on it, like entering calendar dates.  I feel isolated and uncool about this Lack of iPhone Love, people!  Everybody loves their iPhone, it seems.  But — I confess — I miss my Blackberry.
  • In general, things that make me uncool.
  • In general, things that make me feel different.
  • That technology in general, including my iPhone, seems to be bamboozling me in ways that feel unfamiliar to me.  Now, this might just involve the normal learning curve, when doing something new is involved. However, NOW, there is that additional shame of aging.  Am I unable to learn new technology, because .. I’m getting too old?

Here’s one more thing I want to say before I wrap up this hastily-written post and publish it — with all it’s imperfections —  I want to say a couple of things about the presentation yesterday.

  • It went fine.
  • And I confessed some things at the presentation. I self-disclosed that my passion for the work I do is somewhat fueled by “experiences I had as a child involving hospitals.”  And, I confessed that I was anxious at the beginning of the presentation.

I feel fine about those confessions, because they fit the presentation.  And they were short and sweet.

I like being transparent and “confessing”, when it helps other people (and me, too).  I think NAMING things can be very helpful.

Sometimes it’s confusing to know what to reveal. Sometimes it’s confusing to know whom to reveal things to. I confess: those are issues for me here, too, as I write to you.

Blogging as confession.

I guess there’s no shame in that.

Thanks for reading.

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , | 8 Comments

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