The Daily Post’s writing prompt Six of One, Half a Dozen of the Other has asked us to write a six-word story about what we think the future holds for us, and then expand on it.
Here’s my six word story:
Aging has Begun, More to Come
Now please don’t tell me to elaborate on this little story too much. Such cruel reminders touch a raw nerve and it can get painful. Painful to think about which nuts and bolts have started to go lose; which part of brain is beginning to fuse. And then I’ll start wondering when did this aging began?
Painting: Aging Hourglass
Do we begin to age soon after we are born, or is that process called growing in age? Which means till our mid-twenties we continue to grow and bloom. In fact at that age we don’t even think we are ever going to grow old. But it’s an inevitable decline thereon. So, aging is not when our back clearly shows the stoop or our head is full of grey. Aging is the whole process of going downhill, that begins with the cellular changes soon after youth; with the onset of grey hair or with growing aches and pains in our bones.
Basically, after achieving peak of adulthood, soon begins a slow degeneration of body assets given to us by nature. Oxidation, free-radicals or whatever chemical reasons bring it on, it just has to happen. It’s a different issue that most of us are created imperfect by nature. Hence other than aging, it is genetics and our individual environment that’s the reason of ill-health and imperfection but aging certainly further deteriorates this imperfection. Aging may also onset some new disease in those body parts that we always assumed to be perfect, till at some stage we may lose these organs altogether.
Teeth show aging. Even some children do not have perfect teeth, and even at the prime of youth many people have teeth full of holes that have been medically filled. But it’s a different issue. One day, teeth will fall off and never come back. Now that’s what is frightening. Right now, my teeth are more or less the same as they’ve been for years. They did go through some early repair work, a root canal and couple of fillings. But it’s different from what’s to come in the future.
Worsening eye-sight is generally an early sign of aging. But then again, these days even children wear specs and contacts, and laser surgeries are common. Between the age of 25 and 30, I had already developed Myopia or nearsightedness. Glasses though I had, I hardly ever wore them. Based on this neglect, my eyes-sight should have gone worse in all these years. Surprisingly it hasn’t but for how long will it be like that? It’s been different for farsightedness. Till two years ago I didn’t need reading glasses. Now I most certainly do. My mother says, aging is not just about changed vision but also about problems like cataract and glaucoma so we should take care. And how do we do that?
These days hair problems too are not merely age-related as they begin in youth itself, thanks to harsh colorants. But aging adds to it. As in my case, my hair that were once my asset, are not very glossy anymore. Hair fall is another problem. Greying that began a decade ago is bound to increase in future. Hair-colour makes them dull and not using a colour will make aging visible. I do not like to colour them all the time so sometimes I let them be.
There will be skin changes in future. As such my skin was never my asset, for I didn’t have peaches and cream complexion that some other family members had. Moreover it’s always been neglected. Funnily, whatever little signs of wri*k*ing (that began whenever it did), are somehow not getting any worse. But who knows the future?
Other than these vain cosmetic criteria, there is inner health that counts more. Again, whatever health problems I have right now, have always been there. I learnt to cope with them and I haven’t developed anything new lately.
Overall I feel I’m kind of stuck in time but for how long will this state continue? If aging began years ago, it was slow, it paused off and on…but it will eventually reappear and take charge brutishly, what with all the defense mechanisms gone weak. That’s why the whole world fears aging.
Was that a dreadful rant? Sure it was. Actually it was just my little story gone wrong. I don’ t worry that much about appearance and I am happy with natural aging. Moreover I try not to hang around much with people who bother too much about these things.
And yet it is life itself that we truly wish to seek; a happy and healthy life at that. Hence I’ll change my six-word story:
Life has begun, More to come
Happiness has begun, More to come