When it comes to friends, I have an embarrassment of riches. They are beautiful, young, active, interesting, compassionate and fun. We had our monthly meeting on Saturday at the St. Clair winery/tasting room. It's always fun to catch up, because lives are so busy, and there is seldom time to stop the madness and just yak.
I'm grateful that we all commit a couple of hours a month to just reconnecting.
It's always a little bittersweet for me, because I am the senior member--by a good 20 years. And in the course of catching up, I can't help but be reminded of the adventures of my 40s and the infirmities of my 60s. I'm not complaining, because I am blessed with good health. But I'm reminded daily of the things I am no longer able do.
Today, Blogger Moi regaled us with a beautiful story of strength and endurance that both inspired and depressed me. She actually runs up--that's right, up mountains. Reading her accounting of this monumental effort actually caused me shortness of breath! Wow. Said Mt. is over 10,000 feet.
So while I hobbled into my dog-walking-clod-hoppers (because that's literally what I have to do-- hop over clods of dirt, cactus, weeds, and critters) in order to take my two canines for their morning constitutional; I took a walk down memory lane to my 40s just to remind myself that I had once been much more active,alive and athletic.
Yes, dear reader, there was a time when my favorite activity, was a 20 mile bike ride-before work or swimming a half-mile, six days a week. I enjoyed boating, golf, softball, canoeing, spelunking and camping (which I am currently rediscovering). I was never a competitive athlete, because... I'm not terribly competitive. Even playing softball, I tended to be the class clown. (Even though I could put some serious hurt on a softball.)
It's not just the creeping stiffness of joints, with a loss of muscle strength or even an acute- to-chronic back injury; something just shifted for me from outer-ness to inner-ness-- more observation and reflection than activity.
Truthfully, I miss the joy of physical achievements, but not enough to embark on the immense effort to attain them. I feel a little out of step with my compatriots, but I so enjoy their youth and enthusiasm. And feel blessed that they include me in their circle.