The Good, The Bad and The Ugly; Men life-changes as we get older
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Thread: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly; Men life-changes as we get older

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    Senior Member Ski Pro 3's Avatar
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    The Good, The Bad and The Ugly; Men life-changes as we get older

    I've been taking care of my father recently and he asked me a question at dinner on Sunday; "Did you ever think you'd see me needing a walker to get around?" It got me thinking about his changing life as he aged to, as of now, 84 years old. I turn 60 this year and I think a lot of us on this forum are around the same age. So, I figured we could share those things that have struck a cord with us on the good, bad and ugly we observe in our own lives as we age. (BTW, I answered Dad's question this way; you are able to use a walker, you recognize a walker and the alternative to not making it to the age of needing one is a life cut short.) I figure the day will come for me, like it did for Dad; a cane, special shoes, a power recliner, a walker and hopefully live long enough to use an electric cart.

    Here's a few things I've noted over the past year or so.
    1. I am retired. I retired 3 years ago at 56. I wanted to retire early enough to enjoy a few years with my wife before age reduced the opportunities of enjoying retirement. I'm not rich. I saved all my life, calculated how much I would need to be financially independent and when I reached that point, I pulled the plug on working full time for some other person to get rich(er) off my sweat.
    2. I take naps. I work outside almost every day on my place. (I have 5 acres and it can be as much or as little upkeep, mods and maintenance as I care to make it. Around 2pm or so, I come in and check e-mails, then snooze for about an hour or so.
    3. I get up with the sun. I live on a ridge and when the sun kisses the ridge to the West of me, I wake up. No alarm clock on the night stand any more. If I do need to wake up earlier, I set the timer on the microwave. My dogs hear the 'ding!' and jump all over the bed, figuring there is a plate that needs licking.
    4. I enjoy reading my newspaper. I know printed news is on it's way out, but there is nothing like sitting down in the cool of the morning on the front porch with a cup of coffee and a paper. In cool weather, I sit next to a window and enjoy the weather from a warm and comfy chair.
    5. Do don't eat breakfast. Eating in the morning makes me nauseous. Every once in a while, I'll fix a breakfast, but it's after 10am and I've been up for a few hours already.
    6. Lunch is much smaller or not at all. I don't each a big lunch either. It's usually some cottage cheese, tomatoes, avocado and water or another cup of coffee.
    7. Dinner isn't a huge portion feed like it was when I worked full time and burned the calories.
    8. I weigh too much. According to my doctor, I am overweight. I'm 5'10 1/2" and weigh 185 pounds. She tells me every time I go in that I have a BMI is 26. For my height 25 to 29.9 BMI is OVERWEIGHT. I don't look fat. I don't have a washboard stomach, but I don't think I'm fat either. Since retired, I eat a lot less and a lot healthier, but the weight doesn't go down. I've weighed within 5 pounds of what I weigh now for at least 15 years. Maybe longer, but I can't remember any further back than that.
    9. For all the manual labor I do every day on our property, I ache all the time it seems. Shoulders, neck, back, knees, feet. Something always seems to have an ache. Right now, a got pain in my right wrist, left shoulder and a crick in my neck. I never used to have aches like these unless I hiked 10 miles in the mountains, raced a 100 mile enduro or other excursion along those lines.
    10. The doc says I have high cholesterol and should go on a staton drug like Lipitor. All other vitals are great; 106 over 60 blood pressure, oxygen content of my blood is 98%, resting pulse 58 to 62 beats per minute. I won't take any of the drugs for high cholesterol after I quizzed my doc about the stats; Question; what is my risk of a heart attack right now if I don't take it? 5% she says. How much would the drugs reduce that by? 50% she says. So, taking a drug for life changes my risk for heart attack by less than 3%? From 95% without the drugs to 97.5% with the drug that I won't have a heart attack. Geez! That's within the margin of of error in stats I think!!
    11. I rarely sleep more than 6 hours a night. With afternoon snoozes, I suppose that's o.k. Doc has no opinion other than she says I SHOULD be getting 8 hours or more. I'd go stir-crazy if I had to stay in a bed for 8 straight hours!
    12. I'm learning to let go of things that used to bug me. They still bug me, but on a scale of 1 to 10, 8's are now 5's and so on. In the BIG PICTURE things that I really don't have control over, I'm letting them slide.
    13. Grand kids are great! My whole demeanor is a much nicer person when they are around and it's not something I have to think about. When they are around, I immediately relax and let everything go and give them 100% of my attention. I guess it goes with having so much time now retired. When I worked, it seemed I had to work to fit my kids into my life as well. I hope they don't hold it against me when it comes time to select a retirement home for me!!
    14. I have a lot of knowledge and no one is interested in it. I can tell you the best way to wax a car, cook eggs over easy on cast iron, use leverage to get heavy things from one point to another, etc. I took two weekends and built a tree fort for my grand kids at their house. 4 days and it looks like a mountain chalet in a redwood tree. My son helped me, but mostly like how a wife helps; hold this, hand me that, etc. I did 'allow' him to do as much as possible, but the concept of building something that won't fall down and kill the kids is something all his college education didn't equip him for. I showed him how to calculate out the max load on a 4x4 post, for example; 3.5"x3.5" gives area of the post top of over 12" Doug Fir #2 that is 6' long can support over 10,000 pounds on top. I showed him how to calculate shear on the post, sizing Lag Bolts, etc. It's pretty much in my head, but I know it, having built enough stuff around my place and looking it up or using a How-To construction tips book. Even though my career was in electronics. I wonder how this escaped my son when we did these projects as he grew up.
    15. Cars are so computerized that I'd never be able to work on one any more. Well, I have changed out timing belts, water pumps, etc. But the engines, trannys, diffs, etc and nothing like cars I used to work on. Lucky for me, motorcycles haven't so radically evolved as cars.
    16. I love big screen TV. I have a plasma and it's the BOMB!
    17. I rarely use a cell phone. My kids go nuts that I finally bought a 'smart' phone, but I don't have apps on it. I'm sure they would make my life faster, but what do I care about that? My 10 year old grandson can do things with my phone that should scare me with his understanding of technology.

    I'll add more as they come to mind.

    So post away. What's been good, bad or ugly in your experiences of getting older?
    Last edited by Ski Pro 3; 07-12-2016 at 06:39 PM.
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    Senior Member Xracer's Avatar
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    I've come to face the fact I'll never be the next World Moto-Cross Champion. That being the case I'll now just enjoy the ride.

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    Senior Member GaryL's Avatar
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    Hard to believe since we differ so much politically. If I wrote my life it is almost a mirror image of what you wrote. I am the exact same height as you are but weigh 10 pounds less at 175 and I have you by 4+ years in age at 64 now. I also retired early at 50 16 years ago and take care of my 3 acre piece plus oversee my elderly neighbors 6 acre yard and the adjoining 120 acres of woods that was once a big apple orchard.

    I don't nap ever but I am up at the crack of dawn because my wife still works and leaves at 7 AM every morning. I eat constantly and must. Since very young I have had Hypo Glycemia (Low Blood Sugar) which is the opposite of Diabetes. Lots of small meals all day long including the most important meal of breakfast. Failure to eat results in shakes and light headedness. Like a TW with the stock fuel tank I have to top it off all day long so I never hit the reserve.

    Every day is a new day and a new ache. I never know what will hurt when I wake up and attribute most of this to arthritis and past injuries since I have not been good to my body with motorcycles, snow and water skiing, rocking and rolling in the prisons for 27 years and never hiring anyone to do my work around the house, shop, building projects and carpentry. I can fix just about anything non tech and cell phones and computers are something I honestly don't care to get deep in to. My smart phone is owned by a dummy and I like it that way since it only works when I get close to town and a signal.

    No children or grands and all but my brothers are gone. I am close with my full brother who lives 20 miles away while a half brother is in Atlanta, Ga. We golf, fish, kayak and do a lot together.

    I smoke and always have since 16 so the doctors don't much care for me. I had a heart attack at 55, Minor IMO, got a stent and they attribute it directly to smoking. Funny how that works because my brother who never smoked has had 2 attacks much earlier than mine and he runs on stress and ego. Dad lived to 90 and was miserable from around 75 because of arthritis and poor joint health. Mom pretty much killed herself with every pill the doctors could prescribe so I can't use her longevity as a base.

    One thing you will likely start to notice around now is it does get harder and slower to pee. The plumbing is old and the prostate enlarges as we age. Take more pills is the medical answer but I hate the pills and don't usually take the doctors advice any way. Based on my male relatives who lived similar lifestyles as mine I would say that around 85 is a good time to check out. They all lived to their early 90s but the last 5-10 years were miserable in just about every respect as their bodies got up in miles and started giving out.

    My plan is a rather simple one. Carry on as I have because the damage is done and the cake is baked. Stay as active as possible which fights off the arthritis from setting in too deep. Have a drink in the evenings and avoid any stress in your life by fixing the cause or completely rejecting it. I don't do the family tiffs, don't do debt and I do as I damn well please by allowing others to carry all the grudges however they see fit. My BP is the exact same as yours unless I get dragged into family issues that can spike it quick. I do take a statin and cholesterol drug daily but that is it and I honestly hate them both. I am willing to bet I will live just as long or longer with none of it. Me and my wife have absolutely nothing to argue about and go to bed together every night still in love as best friends. We actually avoid a lot of close friends simply because of the baggage they all seem to carry that we can't help them with because their problems are none of our business. My attitude is simple and if you hate your wife you leave her, if you hate yourself then too bad, get over it and fix what you hate. I logged out of here for this exact reason and I refuse to argue with idiots and we certainly have our share of them lately. Watching my country swirling around in the toilet does bother me a lot and I know exactly why it is happening and who is the cause but I can't show them the errors of their ways. Liberalism, socialism, political correctness and a host of other issues are ruining the country I love and this concept of taking care of everyone through entitlements rather than just saying get off your ass and get to work bugs the crap out of me. It is pretty hard to find a good job if you have enough ornaments in your face to hang a shower curtain from. If you made a conscious decision to remain stupid by avoiding education then too bad for you, I paid your way to go to school all of my life just as those before me paid my way. If you are able bodied enough to hang out, do drugs, screw and make babies then you can got to work every day just like I did and earn your own living. If you can't or won't carry your own weight then you should be banished from the tribe and left to make it on your own. This is the ugly part of the society we are creating and I have no hope of it ever getting any better.

    GaryL
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    Super Moderator littletommy's Avatar
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    Good, Bad and Ugly?

    I'm all three and nothing's likely to change.
    1st John 1:9
    If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

    John 3:16
    For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

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    Senior Member Hoot Gibson's Avatar
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    At 67 make no mistake, growing older sucks...no golden years BS for Hoot, but you live with the cards you are dealt and deal em'

    Hell how many other guys can run up and down a basketball court, football, field, and patrol a baseball diamond full of 17/18 year olds 150-180 times a year, and still keep up? Not many is my guess...at 5' 10" in boots I weigh in at 188 and that varies between 185-195 depending on craft beer consumption and season..."Fat"? hardly but not skinny either...forget that mass index sh*t everybody's body is different...I have short legs {29" inseam} and a long body...so 160 ain't working for me...175 would be nice, but that isn't likely to happen again...unless I give up Beer and Meat..."fat" chance...

    I lifted weights for years, but after Moab, and a couple of bumps and stretched tendons put that on hold, and now I am reduced to lifting in reps, rather than pounds, and yes that sucks...this photo is at 62, five years later...not so much

    Where were you at 62.jpg

    Lucky man am I, been with the same women for over 40 years...and will be married 40 this December....no regrets...of the 3 kids, both boys are educated and successful and daughter, despite being born with multiple handicaps is well taken care of, mostly by us....living in assisted living...these are the people that need help, not well and able body freeloaders, from inside and outside the US....2 healthy and happy Grandsons, who I worry about....mostly for the world and country they will inherit...it is going to be a f*cking Mess...and nothing is going to change that...certainly not with the Big Government Stooges in Washington of both parties...say and beetch all you want...we are heading straight to Hell...Obama and Killary taking us there in a race car, Trump and the GOP on a TW...it is coming, and that alone makes me happy I was born when I was, I don't want to be around when the shit hits the fan...

    on second thought...maybe I do, might be fun, taking a few out in a blaze of bullets...
    Shit Hits the Fan.jpg

    No regrets at all, don't regret joining the Air Force, volunteering for Vietnam and making it a long vacation, when Nha Trang was finished by heading to Tan Son Nhut{Saigon}....regrets are for losers and fools....you can't dwell on them.

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    Growing old and having Diabetes 2 sucks{but you will never see me blaming Agent Orange, to many want a few extra bucks off the tax payers, I am not one of them, let some other guy sell his soul to Uncle Sam for some bennies, I won't be "That Guy"} ....

    So quit bitching about your lot in life, quit worshipping the Gawd Damn Political Class, especially that Half Witted fool in the White House....and move on...growing old in not for the weak....

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    Last edited by Hoot Gibson; 07-13-2016 at 07:12 AM.
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    Senior Member troll's Avatar
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    We start out in diapers and we end up in diapers.... and in between it really doesn't matter what our political view is. The journey is still chop wood and carry water, most of us really want the same things.

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    Senior Member JagLite's Avatar
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    I like everyone's comments whether I agree or not with all that is said.

    We each have our own good, bad, and ugly list.

    I wonder if the "ugly" is when others try to force their "good" on us even when it is one of our "bad's"?
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    Senior Member jb882's Avatar
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    Im only in my 40's so i still have a ways to go yet.. but i thought i would share something that is somewhat relevant to the discussion and i suspect you all already know. Life is short and enjoy every minute of it that you can. It literally can all be taken away with the blink of an eye.

    That what happened to my father, here is the cliff notes kind of story about what happened to him and how it was all taken away...

    My dad at age 60 was a lot like our friend Hoot. He was in very good shape for his age, a lot of folks mistook him for being in his 40's. He literally still ran 10 miles a day every day at that age was strong and could do anything. He was healthy without a single health problem, took no medication for anything and his doctor would tell him he was one of the healthiest people he ever had as a patient. He was also a lot like Hoot in mannerisms, not quite as opinionated but took no BS, made no excuses ever and would never accept them from anyone else either.

    Here is a picture of my dad at age 60 with his Mom and his sister.

    And at 58 building an addition on his house.


    Fast forward to February of 2010. I was off work and stopped by his shop to say hi and see if he wanted to go have lunch. He was not there and one of his guys told me he had gone home with a headache. I thought that was kind of odd so i headed to his house to see what was up. When i got there he told me he had a massive headache and could not see out of a portion of his left eye. At the time i thought he was having a stroke or something so i called the ambulance and off to the hospital he went. They ruled out a stroke pretty quick but the ER docs were very puzzled as to what was going on so they admitted him for more tests. Once they did the CT scan on his head they knew what was going on. He had a brain tumor the size of a lemon in the left rear of his brain. Up until this point he had zero symptoms but this instantly changed everything. He had the tumor resected, well as much as they could take out and that's wen we found out the really bad part. It was a grade v malignant tumor called a glioblastomea. This thing is as bad it gets, no cure, no real management, your toast no matter what. He lived for 15 months after that and did chemo, radiation, two different experimental drugs, and had two seizures. the tumor took his vision in both eyes to the point he was almost blind and the big seizure he had in 2011 damaged his ability to speak complete sentences and there was a point he could not walk more than a few steps without passing out. None the less he worked at his machine shop until about April of 2011 when he could not do it any more, he did not want to stop working and did not want to leave the guys that worked for him without jobs. I took a leave from my job to take care of him for the last couple months of his life. He passed away in July of 2011 as 62, missed his 63'rd birthday by a couple weeks.

    Here are some pics of my dad shortly before he died around May 2011. I literally had to life him into the boat but he wanted to go and i was not going to say no. He was a shell of himself at this point, still weighed the same but had no strength due to the damage to his brain.



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    Senior Member Hoot Gibson's Avatar
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    Can't give it a "like" jb882 But all should realize that tomorrow is promised to nobody....

    God Rest Your Dad's soul....
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    Senior Member dogonit's Avatar
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    jb882 your point is so well and sadly taken. I am past my mid 60's(just) but there was a near neighbor women, athletic and lean and she just conked over and died one day @ 46 from a Brain Aneurysm. I have not taken the best care of myself unlike your dad did and we never know when that moment might come. All we know is that it will. I am so sorry to here about your father. I know how it was for me watching the last generation leave and then realizing that mine was on deck.
    Just give me a minute while I collect my thoughts. They're around here somewhere. Maybe!

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