Sunday, May 6, 2018

Overcoats & Bowels Revisited

Click album cover to play music while reading this essay:

Interesting. Two friends have commented on my previous post saying: "I was sorry to see you speak about your 'decrepit' body. My take on aging is a little more positive." and your essay is ... "perhaps a bit less positive than i tend to feel about getting older, but you get to decide." One relative didn't feel it was too negative. 

First of all, I do not feel negative about aging. I enjoy my life, my days, my condo, my family and friends, my cats. I do feel that I am being realistic about aging because things do change. I think that an awareness of these changes helps one cope, restructure, and live one's life the best one can.

In a previous essay I talked a little about my aches and pains saying that I earned them fair and square and was grateful that I was still alive to experience them!

There is an exponential difference in the aging process when your age goes from 70 to 80 than there was when it progressed 30 to 40! I don't want to think about 80 to 90

Is it that there is a unspoken stigma attached to discussing the results of the aging process? There is a stigma attached to so many things like discussing death, Alzheimer's, cancers, sex, bowel habits, and overcoats! Maybe the Aging Stigma is stronger than I realize

Is it that the results of aging are so personal that they are meant to be kept personal or is it that most people cannot really admit or face these changes? Is it that some people (not  pointed at my friends who commented) cannot face aging and death which are part of certainty when so much in life is not?

Are parts of the aging process so distasteful and embarassing and bodily, that discussion is inappropriate and to be avoided? Is it that by giving it too much attention, one does in fact become fixated on being old rather than accentuating the positive?

Do these caveats reflect where I am coming from and not my perceptions of the general public with regards to aging?  

Do you end up reaping what you sow? Does the quote "Keep Calm and Carry On," which was a motivaitonal poster produced by the British government in 1939 in preparation for World War II, apply to aging as well?

Maybe my writing style, my sense of humor, my approach to life; comes off as more negative than I would want. I re-read my essay "Don't Speak of Overcoats or Your Bowels" (click to open in a new window) and I did not feel that it was too negative. Sarcastic, yes. Tongue in cheek, yes. Honest, yes. Too negative, no.

It was descriptive and detailed (although not too detailed about the bowels :-) but it was also optimistic and hopeful. It was not meant to complain but rather to process by putting my current thinking and experience into writing. 

This is the same process I used when Gregory was still with me and since I could not discuss issues with him, I turned to my computer to process in writing and posting on my blog.

Or do I protest too much? That's all for now! You have got to accentuate the positive...

Accentuate the Positive
Music by Harold Arlen 
and the lyrics by Johnny Mercer.
You've got to accentuate the positive
Eliminate the negative
Latch on to the affirmative
Don't mess with Mister In-Between
You've got to spread joy up to the maximum
Bring gloom down to the minimum
Have faith or pandemonium
Liable to walk upon the scene
To illustrate his last remark
Jonah in the whale, Noah in the ark
What did they do
Just when everything looked so dark
Man, they said we better, accentuate the positive
Eliminate the negative
Latch on to the affirmative
Don't mess with Mister In-Between
No, do not mess with Mister In-Between
Do you hear me?
Oh, listen to me children and-a you will hear
About the elininatin' of the negative
And the accent on the positive
And gather 'round me children if you're willin'
And sit tight while I start reviewin'
The attitude of doin' right

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