January is the time for New Year’s resolutions. For 2019, my 90th year, I resolve to be easy on myself and not expect too much. My dues were paid in previous years, by being a military wife, teacher, mother, grandmother and volunteer. This year I will be aware of my physical limitations, and only do what makes me happy. Things that make me happy are usually socially acceptable and not a menace to society.
I resolve to perfect my Spotify playlist, a source of great enjoyment for me, deleting the least awesome songs and adding more of my favorite jazz and soul. I aim for a diversified mix of country, classical, and blues. I will maintain the list of songs at 500 or less. This year began with 511 songs, so I must make some cuts, however difficult.
I resolve to walk laps inside my house each day, using my top-of-the-line Rollator walker. I will walk circles while my iPad plays music in the den, and its timer is set for ten minutes. The goal is to keep my body upright and ambulatory as long as possible, hopefully until my 90th birthday in late October. Starting in the den, I will walk from den to living room to dining room to kitchen, completing the circle back to the den, then continue round and round, reversing at the five minute mark to balance the brain and other body parts. I will make the ten-minute walks three times each day, totaling thirty minutes of walking per day.
I resolve to walk and drive carefully, not fall again, or crash the car. I would like to maintain my excellent driving record. Every time I leave the house, my son cautions “Do not fall. Do not crash. And, more importantly, do not kill anybody!” I have heard it said so often it has become my mantra.
I resolve to remember and appreciate my parents every day. I got my sense of humor from my father, who knew one joke. A guy goes into a restaurant and is offered the special of the day, beef tongue. He declines, saying “I won’t eat anything that came out of a cow’s mouth. Just fry me a couple of eggs.” My dad was known as Britch, so-named because, as a child, he wore one pair of pants that swallowed him, prompting the name Britches. The name was later shortened to Britch and followed him into old age.
I resolve to continue eating three square meals a day, small meals but well-balanced. The food will be mostly from plants, but since I grew up on homegrown vegetables, and homemade sausage and biscuits, I will not give up Jimmy Dean snack-size sausage/biscuits. They make me think of my mother at work in our Tennessee farmhouse kitchen over the old wood-burning cook stove fueled by firewood I brought in late each afternoon. That was back when I was still a skinny little kid called Pattie Mae. Jimmy Dean sausage/biscuits keep me rooted in my Standing Rock Creek upbringing, which is a good thing.
I resolve to spend less time playing computer games and more time reading. I have been relying on The New Yorker magazine for the latest trend in fiction, but their short stories are not feeding my soul as I would like. I resolve to find better quality reading material. I can give up Words with Friends and Sudoku, but not crossword puzzles, in order to read more.
I resolve to attend Life History meetings the first Thursday of each month and read one of my recently written comical stories describing some elderly predicament. There is never any shortage of material to write about.
I resolve to keep my sense of humor. I plan to produce more and more stories about humor in aging. My wish is for my collection of funny aging stories to be published posthumously under the title, I DIED LAUGHING.
I resolve to keep my friends and family close. Without them I am nothing.
Those are my New Year’s resolutions. Have a good year, everybody, and remember to laugh with, not at, the elderly. We know we are hilarious, especially when involved in romance. I like having a man in my life, but there is a scarcity of ninety-year-old available men. Let me know if you see one!
I resolve to write, laugh, love, and enjoy my way through 2019.
Happy New Year!