Wednesday, September 25, 2019
Kicking the Bucket.
As I go happily skipping towards my death, I feel that I should be prepared for my big moment. There, how's that for trying to stay positive about dying. It's uncanny how sixpence's blog and my blog intersect regarding topics. Yesterday while sexy-six was posting about midlife crisis, my lawyer was putting the final touches on my will. Now don't panic, I haven't been given six weeks to live or something like that but I felt it necessary to protect my sister should something happen.
Sixpence talked about midlife crisis, I don't think I've had a "crisis" but I've had my awakenings. The first was when a close friend's brother died, he was 36 and I was 37. He got up one Sunday morning and went to shave, then he dropped dead. That shocked me and I suddenly realized that I never lived life. I never really dated, I didn't know what it was like to be in love, nobody knew the real Steven, my life was a half lived life.
A few years later, I was slightly down when I turned forty, I did have a feeling of time running out. However I soon grew to love being in my forties. There was a sense of being sure of myself, I was getting comfortable with my homosexuality, I met Dan, I felt healthy, I still felt young, life was good. Even after losing dad, I was ok with life in general age wise. I also think there is something biological there as well, people talk about guys in their forties being promiscuous. I call it my horny forties, I was a lot more active and randy in my forties than I ever was in my thirties. I remember feeling like my sex drive was in overdrive. I sometimes think there is a hidden hormone that triggers men to try and spread their genetics around one last time before it's too late.
Then came fff, fffii, fifty (say whaaat) I find now however I do have that feeling of time running out. I'm not being hysterical in a midlife crisis, I'm being realistic, my father's side of the family has strong killer cancer genes, most of his brothers and sisters started dropping like flies at 50, like his aunts and uncles did, it finally got him as well. I have to be aware of that. I remember when the Doctor told him he was going to die, he said, "I knew that I wouldn't live forever but I didn't think I would go this soon". As I wind my way towards his age, I understand those words more and more, poor dad, there was nothing I could say in that moment.
I find time has finally caught up to me, I got away with it for most of my life but now I'm falling apart. I have not been well back and forth since last fall to be honest, I just don't like to talk about it, maybe nothing, maybe something. I see the guys my age at work, getting cancer, having heart attacks and some of those are the healthy ones, I know it's still a lottery but the odds are starting to build against me and I can't shake that.
The last big moment for me was when I placed mom into a nursing home. That was another wake up call, more like a wake-up shouting and screaming. I was 49 (when did that happen) and suddenly felt alone and that I was at the end. When I turned 50 (wtf) I stopped blogging, some of you were sending me emails wondering if I was alright, I couldn't tell you how depressed I had become. I would blog about other things. I'm ashamed and embarrassed to be in my 50s... like I did something wrong, that's why I never really mentioned it until now. Well actually society views older people like second class citizens, the older you get, the less value you have. I don't want to be in this group but it's not a choice I get to make. The day of my birthday, I felt like I stepped through a door and it slammed shut behind me. That my youth was on the other side, something I can never return to. I felt.. instead of thinking about plans for the future, now I have to start think about winding down.
I had a bit of a rebound, at 50 not much seemed to have changed, I started to believe that crap about age being just a number (garbage that clueless young people say); however that didn't hold. I have no choice, I pulled out my mantra of "learn to accept, learn to accept". I understand now why a lot of older people seem grumpy. The lawyer said to me yesterday as we discussed things like me being terminally ill, suffering, dying, beyond hope of recovery etc, "I'm sorry to have to be so gloomy". I told him the truth is that I deal with these decisions all the time now because of mom so I'm actually used to them. Also I told him that I sometimes was getting stressed about what would happen if I was hurt etc, the government would try to step in and they couldn't run their finger up their nose without putting an eye out. This way things are on my terms and my sister is protected from government interference, so the will gives me peace of mind.
I didn't get to finish the lecture yet on sixpence's blog, the man is a little slow at getting his point across. I'm hoping for something inspirational because I could use some right now.
Posted by Sooo-this-is-me at 11:28 AM
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Here are the main points I got from the lecture:
- The midlife crisis is a social construct caused in part by how our lives have changed.
- We used to live until our 30s-50s, so we would not get bored of our one spouse. Now we live longer and maybe should have three spouses.
- There are two ideas in tension that provoke midlife crises: the fact that our bodies go downhill after 40, and the idea that "life begins at 40" because many people expect to have decades and decades left to live. People see that they are unhappy with what they accomplished, and think they have nothing to look forward to, and then they pretend to drown themselves and run away from their lives.
- People used to marry later! Then they started marrying earlier and having kids clustered closer together. This added to the "empty nest" syndrome.
- "Life begins at 40" was coined in 1917 to encourage women not to get fat.
- As our lifespans changed people became "sandwiched" between their difficult teenaged kids and their aging parents. This added to the stress of midlife.
- Because people's parents live longer they inherit later in life -- typically after the kids are grown up. That means when people are raising their kids (and can use the money from their own dead parents more) they don't get those resources and feel more stressed. Then their kids leave and their parents die they have money they don't know how to spend wisely.
- We used to associate midlife crises with women and menopause, but that has shifted to men (who originally blamed their midlife crises on their menopausal women, because patriarchy).
I'm a big believer in "being prepared" for the realities of life, so I congratulate you on having your lawyer prepare a will for you (and presumably an enduring power of attorney as well). In the same spirit, "being prepared" means going to the doctor and having a thorough checkup. If you haven't been feeling well off and on for the past year, get a physical so that if there IS something wrong, it can be caught early and nipped in the bud. There, that's the end of my lecture . . . for today, young man.
GOOD FOR YOU! also get a power of attorney and an advance directive.
50 is nothing; 65 is something, as is 100. AIM HIGH, STEVEN! I'mma aiming for 100!
I'm at the age of when I hear that a celebrity has died, I say stuff like "s/he was only ninety!" Balder Half was holding his breath when we entered our fifties. My father and mother died at fifty-one and fifty-four, respectively. When I hit fifty-five, Balder Half let his breath out :) I really do need to redo my will. My kids were going to my best friend if something happened to us. I'm pretty sure that they nor my friend want that now, since the kids are in their early forties and she's sixty-two. I still have to figure out which sister to leave my Starsky and Hutch dvds. Does it seem like I'm not taking you seriously? Eat a tomato, kiddo!
Do get regular physicals, though. That's just smart.
Well cutie, if your worried about death racing for you, and haven't had a mid life crisis yet....why not have one now??? Get a move on and come here to visit. I show you some fun!!!! And sights.
Same happened to a friend of mine too. He was always healthy, ran and worked out. While moving, at 36, dropped over dead coming out of the moving van. That why I love the saying " Live LIVE! Lifes a banquet, and some sorry suckers are straving to death." Have fun and enjoy life, when times up, it's up. I had my will done. I'm leaving everything to the Bucks County ASPCA, and a elephant sanctuary in Kenya.
I'm ten years older than you, Steven, so I can advise you on your late 50s and early 60s. The BEST thing is to age well. I mean, stay slim, work out, eat healthy, wear nice clothes, have projects that take a long time to do and then, when finished, start another one. Try new things, keep current with music, ask your hairdresser to give you a make over to keep up with the times.
Everyone ages at a different rate, and past performance is no indication of future feats, and you might be a great ager. You might not be as hot as a 30-year old, but you can win Best of Show in your own cohort.
I can still wear the same jeans that I wore in high school ( but I don't, because huge tie-dye bell bottoms look stupid), but I can wear Ralph Lauren skinny jeans and when friends and relatives come to visit, it pisses them off. Look good for your age, is what I'm saying, and be the envy of all your frenemies.
Wow! I just got a mental picture of dogs, cats and elephants all dolled up in Maddie's fabulous boas, hats, wigs, gowns and shoes!
I'm like Anne Marie. I tell people I'm going to be a hellion on wheels when I finally decided to move into a nursing home.
Oh, and modern science has deduced human beings have two stages of creativity - one early... and one late, the latter usually beginning in their 50's.
As Irene Cara once famously sang in the movie 'Fame."
♫ ♪ I'm gonna live for-ev-ahhhhhhhhhh ♪ ♫
Still, I'm prepared... just in case!
I like and already adore Vivian!!!!
And she is right of the staying up on current music, fashion, taking care and pamering.. and such. You move with the times and not left behind, and there is something to that, that keeps you young. And her closing line is SOOOOOOO true. I know some of my frenemies hate me for aging well.
And at Deedles...yes tis true! I am leaving not only monetary funds to those two places but they can indeed have all the drag and my earthy belongings and sell them for bills and take the money.
Except my favorite marabou stole and heels. When I get dug up in a development project and my body is found, they'll get a hoot a male was found wearing said items.
*Snort!*, Maddie, I don't know if I ever told you this, but, I absolutely love you! Sorry Stevie, but I was overwhelmed :)
I have always been a firm believer in having a will and more so during the days when our relationship was not "legalized". Too many people I know said things like: My family knows what our relationship is. We don't have to worry. I once worked with a single mother who didn't have a will. When I asked her who would look after her son if anything were to happen to her, she said "my sister would take care of him." When I explained the hard facts of custody etc she was surprised. And got a will shortly there after.
And I am also a firm believer in prearranging burial etc. I was 14 when my father died and remember what my older brother and mother went through. I swore that no one I knew would every have to experience that on my account. Laurent and I joined a funeral coop here on the Island and everything is arranged and paid for.
Yo JAMES: you missed something you need in this Life if you are to be content: good health. If Steven joins the Illuminati can you make sure he is healthy and lives at least until age 103?
I think Dave said in my post (aww you called sexy-six? Smooches!) that the realization that we’re gonna die is what usually triggers the whole midlife crisis thing.
But here I have to give it to Lurkie (hey, hottie) it is a construct, and like all constructs, it can be subverted.
i think it’s fantastic to have a will and a power of attorney. Especially when you’re a gay man. One never knows. I want my porn and sex toys to go to the poor. Wait. Maybe not the sex toys.
Are you okay? You have been quiet.
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