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Old 05-10-2013, 07:21 AM   #21
Alwims
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I was going to be the first to respond to this thread, but didn't want to sound like a complainer. At 58, I'm a mess. Diabetes, Heart Disease, Bypass Surgery, Very bad back, Chronic Pain, Arthritis, etc, etc, etc. Heck, it hurts to go TO bed, let alone get out of bed. I think my last great adventure may have been my solar project, which I got heat stroke from on one of the building days.

I was healthy as a race horse on Oct. 19, 1998. On the morning of Oct. 20Th 1998. I pulled my Concrete Mixer Truck in line for my first load of the day. Keep in mind I weighed 225 and it was all muscle. I opened the door of my truck and politely fell to the ground backwards. My life changed that day. No need to go into my injuries, but will say, I haven't worked at a paying job since and am on Social Security Disability.

I then had all the other things start happening Bypass surgery, etc. I now weight 325 lbs. and there ain't much muscle mass left although I have done what I can to maintain some of it. I went into a deep depression almost to the point of being suicidal. It has taken all this time for me to realize, I can't do much by myself anymore. My wife will tell you, I am the most stubborn, hard headed man she has ever met because I still try.

I still do a lot of what I used to do, but I pay for it dearly. An example, the heat stroke I got put me in bed for 4 days. I have pretty much quit working on our vehicles as bending over the engine or wheel/tire is just something my back won't take and it just kills me to have to pay someone to do something as simple a change spark plugs.

As for your question, "how do you mentally adjust when you just physically canít do it anymore?" I guess that's just something you'll have to figure out on your own as there doesn't seem to be one right answer. Myself, I just keep trying and have just gotten used to failure on some tasks. I guess I'm also one of the lucky one to have a great wife that supports me even when she knows I'm doomed to fail. As we get older, she doesn't say, "I told you so", as much out loud anymore.

She told me when I got hurt and couldn't earn a wage at a paying job that if I would take care of her, the dogs, the cat, the cooking and the housework everything would be just fine. Boy did I get the raw end of the deal. I HATE HOUSEWORK!! She also said she wouldn't gripe if I went fishing, so long as my housework was done. I don't fish near as much as I did when I was working. Oh well we celebrated 30 yrs this last January.

I hope you figure out, "How do you deal with feeling incapable of taking care of your own equipment?". In my case, you just deal with it any way you can.

Wow, what a long post I made and really didn't say anything useful.
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Old 05-10-2013, 04:43 PM   #22
dieselguy
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Thanks for all your replies ... each had a bit of similar thinking along with a bit of individual direction to my dilemma. Like I mentioned ... the situation is not yet upon me, but I just got to thinking. I continue to spin wrenches well, however I do acknowledge that a bit more time passes to get to success.
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Old 05-10-2013, 05:13 PM   #23
Allen in MT
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Well I'm pushing 65, 1 knee replaced the other should be. At times I feel as though I can do now what I did when I was 30, well I try and then I feel it for days to come afterwards, just have to learn to do things in moderation, theres always tomorrow, what!! fix a flat, thats why I have AAA
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Old 05-10-2013, 06:27 PM   #24
Neil.M
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It's not the years, it the miles! And it all depends on the kind of miles you put on the ole' body. Viet Nam and then a quarter century in police work with many of the years in Narcotics. Bad hours, bad food, periods of stress and lots of frustration with the system which added more stress. Then a couple of injuries and Agent Orange exposure from Nam starts to catch up with you and the next thing you know lots of stuff starts going wrong with you. Now, at age 63 I ride a scooter in the big box stores, need a cane to get to the scooter and am now a 100% disabled vet. My going from doing everything from plumbing to auto repairs out of necessity and lack of expendable income is now doing what I can and hiring the rest. I don't let my inability to do things bother me because I know what my limitations are and I wouldn't trade any of my life experiences for better health today. I have had a great life with my bride of 43 years by my side. So my advice is to just do what you can and get help for the rest and just enjoy life to the fullest.
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Old 05-11-2013, 02:18 PM   #25
Wheelhouse
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Well friend, I hear your pain. At 65-1/2 I get those aches and pains, especialy in the knees and shins. I just take 3 Tylanol Arthritus strength, wait 20 minutes and do what needs to be done. I was telling my wife the other day, I feel at times, I am starting to burn out. But then I think, if I burn out, it will be the grandkids turn to wait for me, and they are in thier 20's, lol? Not!!!!! Best of luck to you in the coming years. Hope it gets easier.
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Old 05-12-2013, 04:37 AM   #26
Tom S.
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One thing that helps a lot is learning to take smaller bites at the apple. When possible, instead of working at a job for (say) 4 hours to get it done, work on it for an hour and walk away. Come back later rested and work for another hour or so. Do this until the job is done. It may take a day or two, or even three, but you still get it done, have the satisfaction, and save money.
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Old 05-12-2013, 02:00 PM   #27
brooksider
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Well 67 years, 2 knee replacements, double by pass, chest plating with 3 plates 2 discs and 58 screws, still get my feet on the floor and can put in a days work which used to be able to be done in a morning before break. I look at it like this: I am not getting any older just more experienced, secondly think how lucky I am as there are a lot of people far worse off than me and lastly I try every day to make a stranger smile and better still laugh. Oh by the way I removed the carpet from the bedroom and installed hardwood flooring. Now when I get up in the morning---I tell my wife it is not me it is the floor creaking and cracking.
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Old 05-13-2013, 01:27 PM   #28
snfexpress
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Tom S. said what I do. As I've posted, only 50 but like Neil.M wrote, it's the miles! With a heart attack, stroke, years on the job as a LEO, running my own business for 25 years...well, I take bites. I previously would start a task and finish it without a break. When I changed our 5er tire, in over a hundred degree heat, I did it in chunks by stopping and cooling down in the truck. Oh well! My wife loves me for who I was and who I've become!
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Old 05-14-2013, 04:04 PM   #29
Stephen Underhill
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If I had known I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of myself!! Oh by the way I am 58. Due to career, hobbies and a lot of fun everything hurts these days. I just deal with it.
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Old 05-19-2013, 04:16 PM   #30
h2ojocky
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Nicely said!

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by padredw

My first impulse on reading the original question was to reply: "I'll let you know when I get there, but at 80 and counting I'm still feeling pretty able to take care of myself."

But I didn't post that smart-alickey response for two reasons: 1-- it is a serious and thoughtful question and does not deserve a flip answer. and 2-- I'm just fortunate to be able to do as much as I do, and, of course, I am not able to do what I did at 30 and 40 (or even 60 or 70 for that matter.)

I know there are some others on this forum who have as much experience at living as I do, maybe some with even more. What I feel most of all is gratitude for the joy of life and the abilities I still have.

Our plan is to keep going as long as we can, and yet to be prepared for the time when we will no longer be able to go as we do now. We have a 5000 mile trip planned for July which will take us all the way to the Pacific Northwest (where we have never been in an RV before). Last year we made a trip to Niagara Falls (in Ontario where we met with friends from this forum) and another trip to the Dakotas, Minnesota, and return.

"God forbid that I should boast," as a spiritual brother of mine once said, but take these as expressions of gratitude to God and as words of encouragement for those who are moving toward mature years (and who is not?)
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Old 05-20-2013, 10:22 AM   #31
padredw
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Thank you, h20jocky, for the affirmation.

It came at a good time as I have been on the roof of my fifth-wheel this morning cleaning the roof. I noticed that I am not as agile as I once was and am much more cautious about each step I take, but I got it done. Then I washed the entire trailer (which, of course, is necessary after the roof treatment.) I took some extra time to clean the awning--top side and underside. It looks pretty good, laid it all the way down to get to the top side with a ladder.

One motivation for all this cleaning is to prepare for our trip up through Colorado and Wyoming to Glacier National Park, then over to Washington state and Oregon for our very first time. Our "map" will be pretty well filled in after this trip:

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Old 05-20-2013, 03:25 PM   #32
steelpony5555
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Now don't ya wish you had listened to all those old men who yelled at you "son get some help don't lift that by your self" or "someday you're gonna pay for all this lifting, take it easy" Yeah I heard that too and just like most young bucks I was like "get out of the way old man" lol lol lol Yeah now I wish I had listened to them. On top of beating my body up being a fire fighter and also a telephone lineman I never dreamed that at 60 my body could ache and hurt so bad, of that I would have to take so many meds and get all these shots and pacemakers etc. But I refuse to ask for help and just try to do little bits at a time. Course I got a wonderful wife who will stand her ground and declare no you ain't gonna do that we are calling someone. lol lol lol
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Old 05-26-2013, 07:55 AM   #33
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The old saying "if you have your health you have everything" probably rings true the older we get. I am one of the lucky ones so far. Even with Viet Nam, 32 years of a LEO career, including some stress as a K-9 Trooper, Hostage Negotiator, and UC Narc, never any serious injury or health issues. At almost 61 is is starting though, high blood pressure, recent cataract surgery, body slowing down. I guess my attitude is you just don't worry about what you really can't control anyway. Heck my brother-in-law got drafted and served during the same time frame as me. He lost both legs above the knees, came back home, finished college, worked his way up through a good banking career, raised a family, and retired early. Now they enjoy their hard work by taking trips from Arizona in their SOB Class A. He has all kinds of health issues related to his Nam experience, but he has never complained, he does what he can and enjoys the life he was given. You just don't worry about what you can't control.
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Old 05-26-2013, 09:14 AM   #34
Tom S.
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by JandC

The old saying "if you have your health you have everything" probably rings true the older we get. I am one of the lucky ones so far. Even with Viet Nam, 32 years of a LEO career, including some stress as a K-9 Trooper, Hostage Negotiator, and UC Narc, never any serious injury or health issues. At almost 61 is is starting though, high blood pressure, recent cataract surgery, body slowing down. I guess my attitude is you just don't worry about what you really can't control anyway. Heck my brother-in-law got drafted and served during the same time frame as me. He lost both legs above the knees, came back home, finished college, worked his way up through a good banking career, raised a family, and retired early. Now they enjoy their hard work by taking trips from Arizona in their SOB Class A. He has all kinds of health issues related to his Nam experience, but he has never complained, he does what he can and enjoys the life he was given. You just don't worry about what you can't control.
When I was young and dumb(er), I treated my body like a temple.... temple of doom that is. After 63 years, my broken bone count has reached 12, my knees are worn out, My back is a mess, and I gave up counting sutures a long time ago. So my reckless youth has come back to bite me - hard! Still, I see lots of guys my age in worse condition than I am because of health issues. While my body has taken it's share of lumps, my general health has been good, and I'm so thankful for that!

So as I said in an earlier post, I've learned to slow down, take things a bit at a time and rest when I get worn out. I still over do occasionally, but not nearly as often as when I was younger.
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Old 06-11-2013, 03:28 AM   #35
jdvier
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It is a hard pill to swollow. I get very frustrated because my mind tells me I can but the body tells me no. I have had to make alot of adjustments. At our age we are used to doing it ourselves and not asking or needing help. We need to understand that that is life. Think of it this way now is your time to drink the coffee and watch others do the heavy work.
God bless.
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Old 06-17-2013, 05:13 PM   #36
DonandJudy_12
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At 82 and counting, I still do what I can but get help from family and friends for what I can't do- As a last resort, I hire what must be done under circumstances where I can watch the tech- Thank God for my faith, good doctors and good insurance- And a good woman who can keep me in line- JMHO- Don
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