Saturday, February 11, 2012

The Problem of Ageing

I could categorize people into a few groups over 50 that I presently see being 63. First, there are the miserably unhealthy ones waiting to die. Second, there are people who have wives and children or who are divorced and have children and so they stay alive for their wives and children and friends. Third, there are people who still believe that they are 25 years old but they are actually 50 to 75 years of age. (Very few people over 75 can pull this off successfully). Though I see many of them in this third category I find myself in the second category because of my wife and three biological children ages 15 to 37 and step kids 38 and 40, and two God Daughters in their mid to late 20s. So, though I am envious of friends still pretending they are 25 I often think, "When are they going to do something that gets them killed?" Because even if you believe you are 25, if you are not, likely something you do is going to be fatal when you are over 50. However, maybe that is how they want it.

So, being in the second category and married I find it hard emotionally to want to go on living. Mentally, it is easy because of my wife and kids. However, because of all the people that I love (relatives and friends) that have died that I never expected to ever live without in my life, it is starting to get sort of lonely. And even friends who are still alive when they break up with their girlfriends or spouses after 20 or more years, that is pretty difficult to adapt to as well. This sort of thing was much easier once when I was young. But now at 63 I find it really hard to adapt to big relationship changes in friends lives. So, it is a constant chore to try to inspire yourself to stay alive another hour or another day. Even though I could travel more all over the world than I do I really got exhausted by going to Scotland and England and then turning around within a couple of weeks and then taking a train to Colorado with a sleeper on the Zephyr, then adapting to the altitude of Denver at 63. Then being at over 5000 feet and up to 9000 feet all the way back in the car with my son. I enjoyed it but also found it a physical ordeal of high altitude and physically quite stressing. One needs about 2 to 3 weeks at high altitude to adapt to breathing at that altitude. Even the 3500 feet in Mt. Shasta sometimes can be difficult in some instances because I live right on the Ocean here in California. So, once again I find trying to want to stay alive for yourself is the hardest part of ageing there is: (at least for me).

Note: Even though I'm 63 I still ride a bicycle, ride a dualsport Motorcycle, a 650 and snow ski and travel around the world. I'd be flying planes too except my uncle died in 1942 and then my step brother and his wife and dog crashed in Idaho several years ago now. And since I tend to be a bold person this doesn't work with planes because: "There are old pilots and there are bold pilots but there are no old bold pilots!" So, even though I soloed in 1987 I haven't flown much in the pilots seat since then over a few hours a year. Also, I found I didn't care much for being up in the air alone like I would have when younger. I like having someone else in the plane to that is a more experienced pilot than myself. It's just another way to stay alive for my family and friends. I like flying but humans aren't birds just pilots sometimes. Unless you do something all the time like a bird sometimes things can go wrong.  Being a weekend pilot just isn't safe enough for me anymore.

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