So, a friend reported that her nonagenarian mom will be declining future luncheons with beloved friends. “Too many organ recitals, she lamented, returning from a ladies’ luncheon that would have kept Dr. Kildare interested. (Ten points for knowing who Dr. Kildare is!)

Yep – I get her disappointment, too: when the fun chitchat with friends dwindles and the conversation veers off into a synopsis of familiar and peculiar symptoms. That’s when I start doing a mental check of when I got my last vaccinations.

Beware of giving too many organ recitals in an autumn’s garden. It’s not always kind, necessary or edifying, given the audience.

Just like nobody expected the Spanish Inquisition, who amongst us expected . . . the joys of maturity? (Aging Skin and Strudel)

Seriously, the health classes in junior high school never addressed what happens to seasoned citizen’s body! All the hoopla over sex-ed classes . . .  did they include a class on life after fifty?


It’s like an old codger on a meme said:

You young folks enjoy your twenties, your thirties, and even your forties. Because, somewhere in your fifties, the “CHECK ENGINE” light is going to flash on!    

And when that light flashed on in my life, it was Thanksgiving evening 1996. We’d fed friends and family throughout the afternoon, and I was on the third round of dishes when I felt the strength I’d always taken for granted, depart. I mean a knee-buckling, charm-wilting fatigue washed over me like a wave, and I went to bed, leaving Doug to entertain the guests.

It was in that moment that I became willing to listen to . . . stuff. It wasn’t too long after that, that I found [some] details of other people’s health adventures [a.k.a. organ recitals]. . . well, interesting.

That’s when I knew I was OLD!

One friend had warned me: It’s not talking about your ailments that make you old; it’s being interested in other people’s medical adventures that confirm your age!

Fortunately, we have friends who are younger; they don’t have as many medical adventures as Doug and I are having. When they mention a familiar symptom or two, the trick, though, is keeping a calm expression, and not saying a word . . . or recommending a specialist we liked for that problem.

Happily, we also have older friends, who know some specialists we might need.

The hard thing is remembering before we give our organ recitals, who is in the audience!

organ recitals

 A sad soul can kill you quicker than a germ.  ~John Steinbeck

Postscript: If you, too, have been startled with depletion in your energy level, you might like A Blessing in Less Energy.

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