Aging is no picnic in the park

By Dr. Melissa Martin

Reading columns, articles, and books about how aging is glorious is rather irritating. Let’s get real Lucille.

Wrinkles, crinkles, and saggy skin. Yes, it’s natural aging—but why celebrate it? Let’s get honest Abe. Plastic surgery is expensive.

Senior citizens rock! Yes, but they do it in rocking chairs on the front porch.

What’s so nostalgic about leaky bladders, chronic constipation, and acid indigestion? And old lady bladders are known to squirt when we laugh, cough, or sneeze. Argh! The gut gives out, so say farewell to spicy foods. And stool softeners are popular products with the elderly crowd. Let’s get real Phil.

Cataracts, skin tags, and weird-shaped moles appear. Ugh! And hair starts to grow inside the ears of old men.

Dentures, hearing-aids, and canes aren’t exactly party favors at retirement parties.

“You know that aging will likely cause you to develop wrinkles and gray hair. But do you know how the aging process will affect your teeth, heart and sexuality? Find out what kind of changes you can expect in your body as you continue aging — and what you can do to promote good health at any age.” That’s what the Mayo Clinic website says, but I’m suspicious. Did a young whipper-snapper write it?

“Every so often I read a book about age, and whoever’s writing it says it’s great to be old. It’s great to be wise and sage and mellow: it’s great to be at the point where you understand just what matters in life. I can’t stand people who say things like this,” surmised Nora Ephron.

What’s so funny about aging? Humor does lift the spirit and is pleasant for the soul.

Top party games for people over 60: Musical Recliners, Spin the Bottle of Mylanta, Hide and Go Pee, Doc-Doc Goose, Red Rover-Red Rover-the Nurse Says Bend Over, Kick the Bucket, 20 Questions Shouted into your Good Ear, Pin the Toupee on the Bald Guy, Sag-You’re It.

Is your ancient funny bone laughing?

Top signs you’re too old to trick or treat: You get winded from knocking on the door. You have to have another kid chew the candy for you. You ask for high fiber candy only. When someone drops a candy bar in your bag, you lose your balance and fall over. When the door opens you yell, “Trick or…..” and can’t remember the rest. By the end of the night, you have a bag full of restraining orders. You have to carefully choose a costume that won’t dislodge your hairpiece. You’re the only Power Ranger in the neighborhood with a walker. You keep having to go home to go to the bathroom. (T.P. Crawford Att.)

Oldsters are wise, but youngsters don’t listen and learn. Oldsters have fascinating stories about history and life.

Well, aging does have a few bright spots, I guess.

Letting your flab hangout on a beach where nobody knows you is surreal. And senior discounts are deserved—aging is hard work.

And you can expect your adult kids to scoop dog poop, mow the yard, and rake the leaves. Alright!

As grandparents we can buy ear-blasting toys, 1000-piece puzzles, and finger paints for the grandkids. Shazam!

An older woman can attend get-togethers with high school friends because they’re as old and wrinkled as she is. Hmmm. Wine, chocolate, and sharing funny stories.

And old ladies can wear yoga pants anywhere without being judged. Yea! Saran-wrap-thin yoga pants. Or not. Remember sweatpants? Hides bulges better.

I know! Let’s have an “Old Lady in Yoga Pants Parade” in Portsmouth. We’ll start a world-wide trend. And make aging fun.

Maybe aging is way cooler than I thought!

By Dr. Melissa Martin

Reach:Melissa Martin, Ph.D, is an author, columnist, educator, and therapist Contact her at [email protected]

Reach:Melissa Martin, Ph.D, is an author, columnist, educator, and therapist Contact her at [email protected]