The hubby and I will celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary in February 2017. He was 30 and I was 22 when we got married so you can do the math and determine that neither one of us is a spring chicken. I’ve already chronicled my health issues so there is no need to go into them again here especially since the point of this post is to offer some tips on caring for the loved one in your life as he erm, dances into the later years of his life. I’ll address some thoughts on exercise, eating and doctors – the only issue I have trouble encouraging the hubby to take a hearing test. I know he needs to improve hearing but perhaps it’s a selective hearing loss rather than a medical one that has me repeating myself. Oh well, hopefully these tips will be helpful to you or to others in your family.
Get Up and Move!
As we age we tend to do less because of aching joints or other pains but it’s very important to keep exercising. Whether it’s a brisk walk or something more athletic just MOVE. For me, I lost my exercise when the goats went to new homes so I’m now looking for something to do. I think once the snow goes away I’ll start taking a walk in the morning. The hubby on the other hand, is always in motion! This time of year one of his biggest forms of exercise is chopping wood. He gets around 4 cords of wood out of the forest every year and they have to be cut and split in order to fit in our wood stove.
In the summer he rides his bike and likes to go hiking in the woods. With both of those activities it’s important that he be able to hear well in his surroundings. That is why it is important that I keep
nagging encouraging him to get checked for hearing loss. It wouldn’t do for a bear to sneak up on him while he was walking in the woods now would it?
Get a Check Up
As you get older there are more tests that are recommended to make sure everything is in working order. Some of them are a pain in the tchukes but it is incumbent upon us to make sure that we push the ones we love to get to the doctor to get the tests scheduled. I know I had my baseline mammogram at 40 and I’ve followed the recommendations thereafter. The hubby follows the guidelines for checking his PSA levels. We’ve both had our colonoscopies at the appropriate age. We get our bloodwork checked every year and we get our flu shots. We go to the eye doctor and the dentist at the recommended intervals. The one thing the hubby hasn’t done despite my encouragement is to take a hearing test.
I just learned that Miracle-Ear offers and online hearing test. I took it and I passed with flying colors but I knew I would. My ears, unlike the hubby’s are sharp. He claims that his were damaged when he had to work on a fire truck’s siren back when he was in his 20ies. All I know is that I have to repeat myself an awful lot. He either doesn’t hear me or doesn’t choose to hear me.
Hmmmm, what do you think it is?
Eat a Healthy Diet
A lot of the reason we settled on our little farm was so that we could grow our own food. It was becoming increasingly important to us to control our diet. That doesn’t mean we don’t have our treats now and then but we wanted to eat healthy food and we wanted to know where that food came from. Obviously that is not an option that everyone can take – trust me, I know how much work it is! But anyone can make some changes that will improve what they eat.
Look for organic fruits and vegetables. I know they are more expensive but if you use them instead of letting them rot in the ‘fridge, well that saves a lot of money right there. If you find that a vegetable is getting towards the end of its freshness you can freeze it or make soup. Any trimmings can go in a bag in the freezer to flavor soup or stew later down the road.
Meals should be more heavily weighted towards vegetables than meat. Here on the farm we probably eat two meat meals a week (venison, pork or goat), one seafood, one chicken and three vegetarian. I try to have fruit on hand but in the winter more often than not the fruit is frozen or dried.
Exercise the Mind
It’s very important to keep the brain active as well as the body. Whether you read, do brain puzzles or keep going to school to learn a new skill it’s vital to not let the ole brain muscle atrophy. Anyone that checks in to this blog regularly knows that I like to read. I have always been a reader and the hubby is the same. Trying new things is not only good for the brain it can also be very good for the psyche. The hubby and I are going to a documentary film festival in February. That is a first for both of us and we are really looking forward to seeing some thought provoking movies.
Obviously one needs good hearing to be able to enjoy a movie! I think I’ll send him over to Miracle-Ear. You can head over too to take your free hearing test. You have nothing to lose and better hearing to gain.
I do hope these tips prove helpful for you. If you are not ah-hem, well lived like the hubby and me you can pass them along to other family members who have been on this earth a bit longer. But it is never too early (or too late) to make sure your hearing is A-OK. It doesn’t cost anything but a little bit of time to take that hearing test – I think it took me all of two minutes!