Three surgeries in the past two months! Two months of enforced physical inactivity, opiate pain medications and not even being able to babysit my grandkids. I'm seeing the surgeon on Thursday, and if he gives me the OK, I will be able to resume my normal physical regimen of bicycling, yoga and weight lifting.
Kids fall down all the time. My grandkids, ages 1 through 3, are still learning how to control their bodies. The one year old twins fall down every 30 seconds or so. The three year old is starting to get her act together.
The worst part of my two month long struggle with health is that I haven't been able to get down on the floor with my grandkids to play and rough house.
Every aspect of my life is at a standstill because of the physical inactivity. Can't wait to get started again.
We all fall down.
Kids take it all in stride. If you don't get up when you fall and try again, you'll never learn how to walk. My grandkids fall down, scrape their knees, cry and show the boo-boo to grandpa. I kiss it and we start all over again.
I've been through this picking myself up and putting myself back together so many times. I no longer get depressed or angry about it. It just seems to be the reality of life. People get sick and die. Economic disasters strike from time to time. Completely unexpected problems overwhelm us.
My midwestern upbringing and Catholic indoctrination taught me stoicism. In rural Illinois in my day (the 50s and 60s), nobody wanted to listen to your whining, your excuses or humor your bitch. My family's background is hard ass Irish and German peasantry. I was taught from childhood that nobody was going to help me and that, if I wanted anything, I had better get it for myself.
This is quite a sensible philosophy.
I know how to put myself back together. I'll start out slowly with the physical exercise so that I don't hurt myself... the first consideration for an old fart. I'll get back down on the floor to play and rough house with the grandkids. Today, I got started playing music and drawing. (Even those things went by the wayside, since the opiates put me to sleep for most of the day.)
The biggest smackdown of my life was, of course, Myrna's death. Took me years to want to go on with life. It's still a struggle without her. 12 years ago, the money was flowing in from two big paychecks and we were thinking we were on the verge of retiring to travel the world in luxury.
Everything changed in a few moments.
Then the grandkids came along. I'm not ashamed to say that they gave me a reason to enjoy life and to be positive and enthusiastic again. Caring for them has become my full time job in retirement, and I'm happy with that. In a few months, I'll be moving into an in-law apartment in a new house I'm buying with my daughter and son-in-law so that I can be full time Mr. Mom to my grandkids. Goodbye, Woodstock! (A good thing. It's time to become un-Woodstuck!)
That will come to an end to, but experience has prepared me for that. I already know that the day is not so far away when my grandkids will have other things to do than hang out with grandpa.