Seriously, what do you do when you cannot touch your toes anymore? I’ve heard about this day, back when I was five and I could pretty much put my toes anyplace I wanted them…over my head, behind my back, on my fanny. My Grandma Petty used to watch me pretend to be a gymnast and just shake her head. “One day you won’t be able to do that anymore,” she said. I laughed hysterically. Not me, I thought. I will do this forever. But now I can’t. Now, I can barely put my shoes on without utilizing the kitchen refrigerator for balance.
Age and arthritis has caught up with me in a race that began in my 20’s. It is a mean and vicious competitor. It will stop at nothing to slow down my body with creaks, snaps, pops, soreness, and stiffness. It easily trips me if I’m not looking, and hits me from behind in the knees. Quite frankly, Arthritis is one mean bastard.
Self-pedicures are now a thing of the past. Oh, how I long for the days of being able to save a few bucks by soaking my feet in a warm bath and then scrubbing them with all the pedi paraphernalia and creamy, perfumed lotions. Thankfully, there are lovely women trained to now do this for me. And it’s wonderful. It is wonderful to be pampered while taking a few minutes of “me” time to zone out to the world. But it does come at a cost.
Shoes that tie? No, thank you. Those have been replaced with mules and clogs and sandals and slip-ons. Bras that fasten in the back? Slowly being replaced by front loaders. Washing my back? Long handled brushes have been made for that, apparently by someone else who can no longer reach places where they once did.
When my mom broke her hip, the hospital equipped her with a long handled device to help her pick up things and to assist with pulling on her socks. I’m about ready to purchase one of those, sans broken hip, but with a stiff hip.
So what do you do when you can’t touch your toes anymore? You adjust. You find alternate ways to put on your shoes and bra. You pay someone to polish and pamper your feet, or beg the help of a friend. You start doing gentle stretching exercises to help with the stiffness. And you keep on keeping on because that’s what you do. You laugh in old Arthur’s face, and you giggle when you start wobbling without a cane. The alternative is not nearly as much fun.
May God Bless all of you, from your head to your toes.
Take care of you….