Lists, Et Cetera, & So Forth

This week, I’ve been on a roll! I’ve finally started to cross the “big” things off of my To Do list that I created on January 24th. What day is it today? Oh, yeah, APRIL 8th!

What did I accomplish from the original* list?

*What do I mean by original? I wanted to go back to Jan 24th list to see what I’ve actually accomplished. To Do Lists are living, breathing, ever-evolving entities, aren’t they? If I put my current as-of-today list in this post (see pic), it would be too long and bore you to tears. Come to think of it, maybe this old list is making you want to stab yourself in the eye with the nearest writing utensil. If that’s the case, then maybe this post isn’t for you.

1. Bio for work website – Done! I finally finished that in early February because I had a serious deadline.  The updated page is up and running – by the way, I sound awesome (those website writers are creative)!

2. Call the Carpet Cleaners – Done! They came out in February.

3. Start my running program again – I’ve kinda started.  I went running the other day with my daughter. How did it go? I couldn’t sit or stand for the next two days without groaning because my thighs were on fire!  Walking was fine, but any transition from sitting to standing (and visa versa) was, well, a struggle. Apparently, I should have taken it easier the first time running after being on sabbatical.  (Note to self: try not to act like a 20-year-old when you’re really a 40-something-year-old).

4. Make doctor appointments for everyone (including self) – this is where I’ve finally made some headway!

Item #4:

I know, I know . . . I’m talking about my doctor appointments – this is one of the items on my list that I swore not to do as I age. To hell with the list.

Eye Doctor – Done!

Rachel and I finally went to the eye doctor – yeah, that was fun. I had to finally come face-to-face with the fact that I had to order some bifocals. I’ve been wearing monovision contacts for the last year during the day (one eye for up close, one eye for distance), but using my old glasses at night which wasn’t bad at first. THEN, it became annoying as hell because I couldn’t do puzzles while watching TV (I felt like this happened over night!). I had to lift up my glasses every time to see my puzzle, then put them back on my nose to see the TV.  My left arm looks like Popeye’s now because of all of the arm lifts completed over the last year! Why did I wait this long? Oh, hell, I didn’t want to hear it AND I didn’t want to spend $350 on a new pair of glasses!

Anyway, it’s done. I get my new glasses next week – maybe I’ll post a picture later.

Mammogram – Done!

The other appointment? It’s a little overdue – I got the reminder in September 2010.  Reminder for what? My annual mammogram. Yay! I finally had my exam today.  B-I-G fun.  Nothing does more for the 33-year-old boobs (I didn’t get them until I was 13) than a good old fashioned flattening!

Mammograms are definitely a necessary evil and I know that I shouldn’t put it off. But, I know a lot of you can relate – you get so wrapped up in taking care of everyone else, that you just don’t take care of yourself.

I excel at that.

Can I share a little bit of my appointment with you today? As most of us know (and the men can imagine), it’s an uncomfortable, barbaric, and painful ritual. I usually wince while holding my breath during the whole ordeal (and they do instruct you to hold your breath – like you need to be told that!). While wincing (which is constant throughout the entire exam), the tech doing the mammogram asked me what I thought was a very strange question –

Tech: “Are your breasts always this tender?”

Me (huh?): “Well, only while they’re being smashed between two panes of glass.”

Tech: “Oh, sure. There’s no chance that you’re pregnant, right?”

Me (I would be sobbing if that were so): “Nope.”

Tech: “I just wanted to make sure.”

I have to take a poll. Am I the only one that winces? Does everyone else stand there with smiles or stoic expressions on their faces while the girls are being tortured?  She does this to women all day long and thinks my reaction is abnormal?

Now, I’m anxious about my results. I have a week to worry – great.  That’s all I need. I’ve never had an abnormal result, but I’ve never been asked that question before either.

I still have a couple of other appointments to yet to make, but I just wanted to let you know that I’m making progress on the list. However, today’s exam kind of freaked me out, so I may procrastinate just a tad bit longer (not too much) on the other appointments if you don’t mind.

Girls, we need to take care of ourselves – no one else is going to do it! Let’s make a pact – wait. . . . pacts never really work. But, let’s at least make a promise to work harder at taking care of ourselves by adding ourselves to our lists!

Pinky Promise……

Hey, Do You Want to See Pictures of My Colonoscopy?

As I’m approaching my 45th birthday, I am kind of freakin’ out.  Thirty and Forty really didn’t faze me.  I used to have a baby-face and people always thought I was 4-5 years younger than I really was, so the actual number wasn’t a big deal.

Now I’m halfway to 50 and I don’t feel that old.  And, my baby-face is growing up so I’m no longer reaping the benefits of illusion any more.

As I’m aging, I’ve really started to notice a trend that I really don’t like, the blurting of health-related personal information!  Why do people (as they are getting older) want to over-share about their health problems?  I’m talking about people who you really don’t know very well and see on an infrequent basis.  (I do want to point out that I do want to know about the health of my family and closest friends.  I do care about that!)  What is driving this compulsion?  Do they want to see if you are as miserable as they are?  Do they want sympathy? It’s a mystery.

You know the people I’m talking about.  They’re the ones that you avoid asking, “How are you doing?” because they will really tell you how they are doing in fine detail.  You really were just asking the question as a polite opener and a general “I’m doing Great!” would have done the job.

This pet-peeve of mine got me thinking about myself as I’m literally approaching middle-age (I hope I will hang in there until my 90th birthday).

Here are a few of the peeves that I am going to attempt to avoid (or minimize) as I approach and pass 45:

Talking about my health with strangers and almost complete strangers.  We entertained a couple that were parents of a friend of one of our kids and the dinner discussion centered around their recent surgeries, ailments and hot flashes.  Yikes, really? 

Being a know-it-all.  I really need to start working on this now, I do have a need to be right almost all of the time (it’s the competitive spirit in me).  Recently, I overheard a conversation about tomatoes uttered by someone past middle age.  Person A: “My husband doesn’t like tomatoes.”   Person B (sounding very authoritative on the subject of Men and/or Tomatoes): “Oh, Men don’t like tomatoes.  I don’t know why that is, but they don’t.”  Huh?  Where did that information come from?

Trying to dress like a teenager.  I’m noticing this tendency more and more and maybe it’s because the women are my age now (maybe this has always gone on and I’m just now picking up on it).  My girls do not like it at all and they do comment on it when we are out and about.  (Now, I can threaten them with dressing like that in public if they don’t acquiesce to my demands.)  It’s possible for middle-aged women, such as myself, to create a look that is age-appropriate and hip at the same time.  You just need to realize the boundaries – belly button rings and cropped shirts are an absolute no-no.

Being 100% absolutely sure about everything so there is no room for questions or compromise.  This peeve is a variation on the know-it-all theme.  I don’t think everyone over the age of 45 is like this, but this tendency seems to worsen in the aging process.  I’m just thinking of my peer group.  When we were young we all had opinions on the topics of the day, but they weren’t written in stone.  Now, as we’ve gotten older, some of our crew think in the extreme in almost every topic of discussion – there is no gray (ie Republicans are ALWAYS right and Democrats are ALWAYS wrong).  It’s difficult to converse with someone who can’t acknowledge an alternate side to an issue – I really find it rather boring and tiresome.   

Now, here is my list of  the things that I want to embrace as I approach and pass 45:

Keep up the latest technologies.   Right now I think I’m on par with my kids’ knowledge.  My goal is to keep it that way.  I will not be surpassed!

Stay relevant.  I want to keep well-informed on current issues and topics that interest me.  So when I do offer up an opinion or comment, it’s not based on rumor.  Or, if I don’t know much on the topic, admit it, listen to others and be prepared next time.  I’m always striving to keep an open mind on topics – it’s not always easy.

Remember that age is just a number.  It can’t dictate how you feel.

Take control of my health.  I really need to start exercising more.  This will hopefully prevent me from developing ailments and blurting them to complete strangers! 

Continue to try new things.  Hopefully, this will keep me interesting (assuming that I am already!).

Here’s to turning 45!