In Appreciation

Call me old-fashioned, not with the times, or even schoolmarmish, I cannot say enough how I appreciate a well-intentioned thank you.  Whether a wave from a stranger in a car,  a smile followed by a nod in a waiting line, it matters to me.  When it comes in the form of writing it is especially sweet but when in handwriting, that thank you lingers in my heart for a very long time.

As I transition back into the work force, I want to share these heart-felt notes that came my way from the volunteer experiences I recently had.  The first is from Buffalo City Mission where I taught knitting during their winter semester.  We had a very successful time as evidenced by the ladies’ projects as seen here.  I am heading back for their summer session and look forward to new projects while promoting our big idea of Stitch(ing) Away Stress.  That’s the name of our class.

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Life-Altering Event Tips

I call it a cloud.  A storm cloud.  A storm cloud filled with tragic events.  This cloud of tragedy chose our house and the residents inside to reign its terror.  It has hovered for months but this morning, there was a phone call with news that may loosen the grip of this fury.  Just enough wind of information, perhaps more like a breeze, I am able to document a tip or two that I have found helpful in coping with this life altering event.

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On Fitness

I haven’t written about health and wellness in awhile.  It is not because I have been negligent rather, I wanted to collect some data to share and show that exercise continues to be alive and well in my retirement  life.

When I retired, I said there were three things I wanted to focus on.  They were and continue to be:  knitting [of course], running, and writing/reading.   In my knitting life, I knew I would be attacking the stash working up projects I had only wished/dreamed of finishing.  UPDATE:  I moved OUT a piece of furniture that was housing yarn as those bundled fibers are now finished objects!

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When Seniors Exercise

With this recent third incident, I said to myself, “ok, now I need to write a blog post.”  I am talking about our (hubby and my) morning outings for our daily fix of fresh air and exercise.   They don’t always go smoothly and we’ve just had our third mishap.  Me with my goals and hubby along for daily movement, we set out in the mornings either by bike, foot, or a combination of both, daily.  This is meaning we are both biking, both walking, one running and one walking, or one running and one biking.  I suppose it sounds confusing but there is a rationale for these combinations.   The large picture for both of us is to have a daily dose of fresh air, to move our bodies, to be together, and to have fun.  The main reason for the variety of combinations is due to safety, rest, and training.

Vignette one:  About three weeks ago, we set out, both of us on our bikes.  We got to our destination, were unloading our bikes, mine was unloaded first.  So, I got on and was meandering in the empty parking lot behind us.  We had not verbalized the direction we would take for our outing, so when hubby was ready he jumped on his bike looked both ways to see where I was but in so doing, twisted his bike and fell on the cinders and hard rock along the edge of the path.  More unnerved and embarrassed than anything, we mopped up the bloody mess, attended surface wounds, turned around, and went home.

Vignette two:  About two weeks ago we set out, both of us on our bikes.  It was an absolutely glorious day.  We do not always park in the same spot so as to vary up and keep interest in our activities.  Also, we vary the mileage, both on the bikes and on foot as the more we go out, the stronger we become.  Well, we were nearing the end of our ride, I was in the lead, and wasn’t even thinking of where we parked  the car.  This caused me to keep going.  And, going.  Hubby thought I would realize it, so he sat waiting at a nearby bench.  But after some time, became worried and began searching for me.  I got to a point that finally made me realize I was supposed to be looking for the car but by then, I had over shot it by miles!  I turned around, he was in search-mode, I was sheepish and that was the end of that ride.

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Vignette Three:  I was running, he was on a different bike than he normally rides. He wanted to ‘try out’ this bike he hadn’t ridden in some time while being my safety guard.  I took off, he took off, and I never saw him again until I reached the end of my run.  He claims I must have started in a different direction; I claim the different bike underneath him distracted him and he forgot about me.

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I say to myself, ok, three times is the charm.  What are these stories telling me?  What are we doing or not doing that we could change to avoid these minor mishaps that could indeed lead to major catastrophes?

I believe all three stories suggest a lack of focus on both of our parts and a  lack of communication in the area of informing the intentions of the other.  If I had said where I would be waiting for him in story 1, if we announced to each other where our car was parked in story 2, and if we reminded each other to stay near each other in story 3, these things might have been avoided.

Not a lack of communication in getting along rather a sort of reminder system realizing we are each getting older and need to say our intentions out loud.  Then, we need to make sure the other received the message.

We notice that if a direction is said verbally, it tends to stay in our minds better.  Much like counting the times around on a track out loud to know distance, or counting the levels in making coffee, hubby and I need to verbally remind each other of our intentions and desires more regularly and clearly enough so the other understands.  And probably, waiting for a response from the other to ensure auditory contact is in order, as well.

Minor tweaks to a well designed routine ought to be just what we need. After all, Seniors, at least us, just ‘wanna have fun’, too!