Friday, October 19, 2012

Bad Advertisement for Aging


I’m such a regular at the gym, that I’ve gotten a minor reputation. Some gym members correct my form and show me how to use equipment.  Others ask about the stretches I do – most of which were either given me by physical therapists, or modified by them. People over 50 seem to sense that what I’m doing might help them.

I'm always happy to explain what I'm doing and why.   And it often happens that a man who asks about my hip flexor stretch is awaiting a hip replacement. A woman who asks about my chest and shoulder stretches has a sister who had a mastectomy.

Yesterday a woman in her 20's came up to me. She was curious about a lot more than most people, and she didn’t seem to have any health problems of her own – at least that she wanted to talk about.

She tried to look patient when I explained that I do this because of my hip replacement. I do that because I had a broken collar bone, and this other one because of my mastectomy... I could see in her face that she thought she’d come up to a healthy old lady and instead found a really bad advertisement for aging.

It's not something I'd have wanted to think about at her age.

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