Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Moving into a new neighborhood

I write to emphasize, mostly to myself, what I am thinking and feeling.  Since I read widely, my thoughts are often about something far away in distance or time.  In addition, I am slipping into a different demographic group. I have been in youngish retirees.  Don't laugh. Plenty of people live into their 90's these days. I know of someone who I am told lives alone and is 105 years old.  If you retire at age 65, and you live to 105, you will be retired for 40 years. Now, that is a long time!

Kids today (that's anyone under 70) think that that five or 10 years is a long time.  It is, for steadily holding your breath. It isn't, for a career or a marriage. But, I am moving mentally and physically into the group of middle-old instead being new-old. I am trying to focus on not being too surprised or disappointed if I learn abruptly that I have a problem or disfunction that can't be fixed.  These days, more can be semi-fixed but only with enormous costs, irritations and disruptions. I am aware and impressed by the article by Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, an American oncologist aged 67, entitled "I hope to die at 75", that appeared in The Atlantic magazine.

My wife says often that she needs me and wants me to live.  I asked her what inscription should be on my iPad and she said,"Live and be loved."  I am, but I am overdue by Emanuel's standard for death. I think living is fun and I am confident that exits cannot be reversed.  I was not impressed when my physician mentioned enormous bills to stay alive in some cases but now I can see that a losing battle just keeps on and on.  There can be little to gain by breathing, maybe with effort, for an additional six months.

I am not as old as many of my friends and I don't have bad health.  I clearly have blessings and luck. I know those things and I am just trying to advance my acceptance of a transformation from one state to the next.

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