Living Beyond the Warranty

Last week I wrote about my ailing computer.  It ran really slow and I was afraid it had early-onset dementia and would lose its memory.  Which contains a lot of my memory.

My computer and I are reunited.  It has a new hard drive.  Its memory is intact.  Now I can’t connect to iTunes. I need to connect to sync my iPhone calendar to my iCal (calendar) on my computer.  (That sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it?)

I see a pattern.  I increasingly rely on my tech-toys to back up my memory.  I’m okay with that. Really, it’s kind of cool.

Now I need a new hard drive for my body.  I celebrated my 60th birthday in March.  And, as a cancer survivor, I am grateful for every day.  However.  My parts are wearing out and beyond the warranty.  I don’t think I have enough time left to replace them one by one.

After 25 years of rheumatoid arthritis, I have artificial joints in my knuckles on one hand and a left knee replacement.  I set off the metal detector the last time I flew.  No one cared about my official card from DePuy describing my titanium knee.  I had to go into the total-body scanner.  On the inside I giggled about the poor guy in some little room who had to look at my body unfiltered by clothes.

I miss being independent.  My damaged hands frustrate me daily.  Now I’m anemic and so I have limited energy each day.  I choose my activities carefully.  I drive myself around town and go most anyplace I want, but I get tired and I feel very vulnerable in parking lots.

I want to replace everything at once.  A new hard drive rejuvenated my computer without losing any memory.  A rejuvenated Robin with intact memories and no loss of hard-won wisdom?  Perfect.

What would I do?

I’d pick up each grandchild with no fear of dropping or hurting them.

I’d swim laps without hanging on the wall to catch my breath.

I’d get on an airplane and fly to NYC or Paris.  Alone.

I’d clean my house all by myself.  (maybe!)

Or I could just accept the body I have and be grateful for medical science and my own determination and resilience.

I could find joy in each day and learn to ask for the help I need when I need it.

And pray.

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10 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I’m sorry for your pain and suffering, Robin. You remind me, though, how beautifully our spirits can create and shine despite the degeneration of our physical machinery. Gentle peace; great joy…

    • Thank you, Catherine. It seems a lot of work lately to get to a place of hope, but I KNOW it’s worth it.

  2. Robin I feel the same way some days…can’t do what I used to do and it bothers me. I have that Dorko gene the one where you always have to be doing some thing…can’t sit still. Because of dr. Oz I started taking raspberry ketones they are supposed to help you lose weight, haven’t seen that yet, but on theup side I noticed since I have been taking them my arthritis pain has really decreased. Especially in my right hand. They must have some thing in them for inflammation. I take two a day.

    • Thanks Barb, I’ll check that out.
      Sometimes I envy you guys for having that staying busy thing and other times I feel sorry for you. Balance and moderation seem to be coming up more lately…

  3. If only we had a choice! Robin, you walk through this life with grace, no matter what your joints may be up to.

    Strangely, I just posted something very similar to my blog today without reading yours–and it appears that you and I are about six months apart in age.

  4. I read your post this morning. There must be something in the air for 60-year-olds. Thanks for your support. I really admire how much you write.

  5. Yes, your last three strategies are definitely the best! I have MS, and the only sanity lies in appreciating what you can do, and not mourning the things that you cannot!

    • It helps to hear such advice from someone who really does understand living with chronic illness. I hope yours is in a good place these days. I friend of mine who has MS struggles some in the heat, which we have all had plenty of this year.
      Thank you, Susan.

      • My MS has always been mild. Mostly I’ve been lucky, but I do exercise. Water aerobics and yoga are both awesome for those with MS who can handle a certain level of activity. The heat doesn’t seem to exacerbate my MS, which is fortunate because I live in a very hot place!

      • Water exercise and yoga are the only ways I can exercise with any consistency. Now if I could just be more consistent!

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