There is one bad thing that came with turning fifty. The inability to eat anything you want on the spicy food chart. For me, it’s garlic. Actually, anything buttery with the garlic. Gone are the days of Oysters Rockefeller, garlic pizza and just about any of my special meals. I had a love affair with Garlic early in life and the wonderful flavor made it into most of my recipes. Now, I find it necessary to replace the flavor. I have found that extra herbs like thyme or basil can replace the garlic cloves that I cherished. It’s different, but most times the flavor is acceptable.
We won’t go into detail about what my symptoms are when I do eat garlic. Basically, I’m uncomfortable for a day. A few of my other friends have said that they too have some food problems. Nuts, the peels from some fruits and I have a friend that actually has acquired an allergy to beer. Maybe the lack of garlic in my diet isn’t so bad.
My son once told me that your physiology changes every seven years. You can pick up new allergies or foods will start affecting you differently. I’m hoping that when I turn fifty-seven my garlic problem will cease. For the time being, I sit and watch people eat those wonderful garlic butter rolls at the restaurant we frequently gather with friends …and I wait… only six more years to go.
I’ve also noticed that we have morphed into a group who likes to discuss what illness we are experiencing. The first half hour when we get together is taken up with new aches or pains that we are all feeling. There is all the new terminology we have learned this year. Many of our parents are going through knee replacement and/or hip replacement surgeries. These are things we have to look forward to as we age. My favorite discussion is hormone therapy. The specialist’s change daily on what is good for you, what is bad for you, what natural foods help so you don’t need to put synthetics into your body. It’s enough to drive a person crazy. Once I saw a special about some hormone that was made from mare urine. Excuse me? I’ll just keep trimming that one hair off my chin, if you don’t mind.
Many in my group were athletes when we were younger. And to those who are following in our footsteps I say, “What are you thinking?” The shoulder you can’t bend to lift above your head from a worn rotator cuff, the tendonitis that shoots pain through your arm from tennis or softball, the knee damage from the skiing accident... all these minor injuries develop into serious pains as you get older.
You see your orthopedist and they can now replace those ailing joints. But I’m still attached to the old knee and hip, and if I have to take two Advil every morning for the rest of my life then I’ll do it. It may take me a little longer to get moving in the morning, but it’s a small price to pay to keep my body intact.
And just because the body may be going doesn’t mean the mind isn’t as sharp as it’s always been. My adult kids tease me that I seem to be somewhat confused at times. Maybe I’ve always been this way and they just didn’t have the time to see it. They were so busy with school and boyfriends and girlfriends and jobs that they had little time for Mom and Dad. Maybe I was always a little scattered. I remember being at the mall with my daughters one day and panic sat it. Did I say I would meet them at the food court or by Sears? Did we say we would meet at one or one thirty? And this was when I was a young forty. Of course I ran into them at a coffee shop and they said, “Where have you been? We were supposed to meet here a half hour ago.” Really? Coffee shop at twelve-thirty? Where did that come from? But it wasn’t that I didn’t remember where to meet. Sometimes when you have kids you kind of tune them out. I just needed to learn to not do it when they told me where and when to meet.