Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Fast Lane

Over the last couple of weeks I have had to face the condition of this body-mind - I don't say "my" body because it's pretty clear I'm just renting it from the universe.  I'm getting afraid of getting that final eviction notice.........
And of course, it's not just about that deteriorating spine, cervical, thoracic, lumbar, the osteoarthritis has covered every base.  It's -

Distraction.  Did it take me half an hour to figure out how to put the Google calendar gadget on my home page? then, how to add to it?  And why was I in my e-mail anyway, that caused me to see it?

Actually, that is not off the point at all.  The point is, I'm old.  I'm not just getting old - you could say I'm getting older; I'm old.  Case in point, why do I still have my regular glasses on?  I need to wear my computer glasses when I'm at the computer or I make my neck hurt trying to look through the screen at exactly the right angle.  I can't do that bifocal tilt.  Like I said.....
And now it's an hour or two later.  1:00 pm, to be exact.  Lunch at 2:00 and I haven't worked on my collage for this week, except in my mind.  It was more important to catch up with my friend Laurie, and to pack a hospital survival gift basket for Tina, who is in intensive care in the heart unit, I'm sorry to say.  She is 76, I believe, and has struggled with breathing problems for years now.  Death will be a relief from that.  She doesn't want visitors, so I'll drop the basket off.  Someday I'll write to tell you guys how to pay a hospital visit.  I do know how.  But I am not only respecting Tina's stated wishes, I also know hospitals are danger zones for me, on immunosuppressants.  So I don't insist.

And my e-mail just beeped to inform me that Sarah's funeral is next Saturday....I can't figure out how to add it to the Google calender now.  Pause to add it to my phone calendar, at least.  It will send me an alarm to remind me, too.  How does any old person get by without a smart phone?....

And got an e-mail from the museum about a lecture on Degas' dancers next week, and I have the perfect friend to go to with it - an artist and a dancer (though no longer dancing on her feet).  Left a message with her.

I was going to say, it's been very very very very hard to accept being this old, as if it happened all of a sudden, though it didn't.  The back thing has scared me, that's the truth.  MRI this Friday eve, so we will have you know, more information.  Then options.....And I think maybe this post ends up showing not only how it is to be old in your body, but also how you begin to constantly lose people you love, and that will go on until all your friends and family are dead, though I dearly hope never to lose my daughter and grandson (still, it can happen).  It's constantly acclimating to the changes in yourself, which feel right now like a snowball rolling downhill.


  1. Be aware of the part of you that is unfazed by the body growing old or noting the comparisons to an earlier part of life. Yes, the brain can do that.Try to pull back in a sense, to the one that is aware and unchanging(hint, it's the part of you that thinks she is 23, still). That same awareness is timeless and has been there since consciousness. When you say it feels like a snowball going downhill means you think you are your body? It never accounts for being. You body is never constant, cells dying and being born, over and over again. Watch your body like you would a film, unattached to the outcome. It is freeing.
    This book may help:

    1. Thank you. I am getting this message right now through the new book, Open Mind, Open Heart by Tsoknyi Rinpoche - how to touch on space, the absolute. He says to remember, you are just renting this body. It's true, but wouldn't you think the landlord would be willing to renovate it?

    2. Thank you. I am getting this message also from Open Heart, Open Mind by Tsoknyi Rinpoches - you are just renting this body. Reminds me of an old song, "This Old House." (Ain't a-gonna need this house no longer.....)

  2. Love you Dalai Grandma. May you be free from this suffering.

    And here's my new trick- I get my sumi brush covered in thick ink, then dip it in water, then swoosh an enzo onto some scrap paper i take from the office. It's tremendously liberating!

    1. Love you too Pigger.
      My collage assn. this week is "pick a letter." For some reason I am drawn to the letter J - how many ways can I do that? (Calligraphy?) That sounds like a great way to get free with it.

  3. Facing the wall, or often ceiling, these days I have been trying to work with the admonition to stop doing fear. I am finding a huge majority of my resistance to physical decrepitude is rooted in fears about loss, pain (mine and others'), change, that things will never be 'normal' again. It may be similar to touching space, but whe. I have the energy, I sit with a sense of geologic time, mountains, being a speck on this planet hurtling around the sun. When I don't have the energy I try to draw Buddhas. When that doesn't work I'm reduced to just going one breath at a time, just one moment at a time. No future if the focus is on this moment.
    Sending strength, regardless.

  4. I figure the older I get....more bandages appear on body, but instead of Batman or Hello Kitty printed on them...It says DONT LOOK HERE.

    1. I like the idea. Alternatively, I could cover up everything old, wrinkled, spotted, scarred, and just have holes in the fabric to display the occasional square inch of nice skin. Ha, it would be a designer craze.

  5. Jeanne, I'm sorry I'm out of the loop, and don't know what's "up" with your back. I've been brooding here in solitude at home.

    I hope you do write a post on how to do a hospital visit. I cringe away from them too often I think.

    Have you read "On Vit, On Parle" by Victor Hugo? I think of that poem so often as it brilliantly sums up all the big and little things we do everyday and ends with "Puis, le vast et profond silence de la mort."