POCATELLO, ID – These days I think that if I roll over on my back, I’ll be as helpless as a turtle. And that’s no lie; a few weeks ago, I got under my loom to change the tie-up and had a heck of a time getting back up. I had to ease along the floor until I could find a stable handhold and get one of my legs positioned just right. Whew.
If I hadn’t succeeded, it would have been a long week on the floor waiting for an infrequent visitor to offer a hand up.
I broke my favorite glass vase this evening, elbowed it as I walked by. I could only manage to pick up half the pieces before my back screamed at me. So, I tabled the rest of the cleanup until morning. At least I didn’t have to worry about kids or an oblivious husband wandering into the mess, and luckily it wasn’t on my fumble-in-the-dark path to the kitchen.
Rested, I then picked up the rest of the big pieces and the shards sucked up easily with my handy dandy Dyson cordless vacuum [I hate wrestling cords and outlets in all the wrong places]. The vacuum only works as long as I hold the trigger, like a chainsaw kill switch. Unfortunately, the finger I jammed when I fell down the front steps to the sidewalk moving my garbage container to the street is still sore and inhibits use, but I managed.
Living alone at an advancing age makes me fodder for a colorful murder mystery, or at the very least a “suspicious death”. How many older people have been found dead in their bathtubs? Did they drown? Was it the result of a seizure of some kind? Heart attack? Or a cunning murderer named in the old lady’s will?
Note to police detectives and forensic specialists: Always check the bathtub victim’s ankles for bruises and fingermarks. Look for signs of a struggle: water on the floor, for example.
I’ve watched and read so many murder mysteries over the years, I bet I’d rival Sherlock or Miss Marple in an investigation.
All parents quickly discover what a dangerous place the world is to a toddler, but it all comes round again for people in my age category. How many of us are found too late in lumps at the bottoms of stairs? We get trapped in overturned recliners and clothing with faulty zippers; we fold ourselves up in aluminum lawn chairs, trip over murder-minded pet cats, and sometimes forget we’re standing on a stool when we retrieve something from a high cupboard.
One evening, the bolts jiggled loose in a corner of my bed frame, and I ended up nearly, and helplessly, upside down. It took some doing to extricate myself without a helping hand.
Some days stepping on a windfall apple hidden in the lawn can send me flying.
Gravity seems to pull harder on me these days.
During the past month, I boiled my teakettle dry (the whistle didn’t whistle) until the enamel popped off. I also forgot I was cooking some fresh green beans and burnt them as well. These blips are not always age-related; I think I killed more tea kettles in my 30s than I have in my 60s. Buzzers, teakettle whistles, smoke alarms all have significant functions for all ages.
My recent crockpot purchase has saved me many a scorched soup or stew as I involve myself with other tasks around the house.
According to the proverb, learning to accept one’s limitations has its benefits. I’ve found that to be true in terms of artistic endeavors. Once an artist, writer, craftsman is aware of the parameters of a project, creativity flows. Ideas will flow that wouldn’t otherwise if all the doors are open and all permutations are possible.
So, I’m waiting now for what these newest physical limitations have to teach me here, among friends and family in my private Pocatello.