Brisbane, QLD

Thursday, June 10, 2010

The Sad Side of Growing Old

The great thing about retirement is that you can can go on holidays whenever you like and for as long as you like. You can follow your hobbies and spend time with friends. The sad thing about getting old is that your body starts wearing out and aches, pains and illness start to plague you.
Recently 3 of our dear friends have been diagnosed with serious illness and it makes us very sad and  realise that we are all vulnerable.
Helen and Paul are our very dear friends and travel companions. Here we are waiting at the airport for an adventure of a life time. We went to England, Scotland and then did the river cruise from Amsterdam to Budapest, followed by a holiday in Switzerland.

Paul has been diagnosed with Mesothelioma or asbestosis. He had a tumour and two ribs removed followed by internal bleeding. He is improving now and has started chemotherapy. They had to cancel two holidays that they had booked with us. So sad!

Henry and I went to teachers' college together 48 years ago. We met up again in 2002 at a reunion and have kept in touch ever since attending many reunions together.

Henry and wife, Janelle. 

Henry has been diagnosed with Multi Myeloma (I think it is a blood cancer that attacks the bone marrow.) He is in hospital where they are trying to control the pain and he is having chemotherapy too. He has not been able to attend any reunions lately. So sad!  

Bill and Ruth have been our friends for a long time too. We used to travel on wine tours with them for 15 years. Above we are on a canal boat cruise in France, tasting the French wines.

We have toured most of the Australian wine producing areas together. Bill has just had a triple bypass operation. He is home now and recovering well. Good news!

My prolapsed disc and Bill's heart arrhythmia are nothing to complain about, when others are much worse off. I wish them all the best and hope the rest of their lives can be lived to the best that is possible.
I am happy that we all had many "Adventures before ..................."

On this depressing note I'll say goodnight and promise to bring a happy post next.


  1. So sorry to hear that some of your friends are having health issues. Very glad that you had all those happy years of making memories together to look back on and help you get through these rough patches.
    Sending you a hug.

  2. I have a friend that says: 'The golden years are really made of brass'. And so it is, the body is just so fragile.

    I hope your friends can heal and get around soon.


  3. It's a sad post today - happy memories tinged with sadness. Something Mum always says just popped into my mind "He (or she) had a good innings" Mum says this whenever she hears something sad about someone she knows.
    Melbourne Daily Photo

  4. Hi Diane, That is sad... We always hate to see our friends go through such horrible illnesses. I never felt old until this past month. My knee problem (even though small compared to others' problems) has really gotten me down though....

    Oh--isn't it just hell to get old????? DARN! That's why they tell retirees to travel when they are younger --before they can't any longer.


  5. It is hard to accept that we are now the "elders"..and just like steadfast machines, we to will eventually wear out. The thing we need to remember is good maintenance, good karma and good wine!

  6. Diane
    Yes, that is an upsetting "post".
    I believe I meet Helen and Paul at the Swiss day at "Des Alpes"?
    It is so sad about Henry. It was good though that he was able earlier in the year to go on his "annual beloved fishing safari".
    Let's pray and hope, all will improve and that they are all back having a 'ball' as soon as possible.
    Colin (HB)

  7. Life becomes sobering, I agree. The thing is to keep planning and live each day as it comes. That is my approach at this stage, anyway.

  8. Not a good part of growing old, for sure but yet a part of life. Once (years ago) I took a wellness class where the teacher asked "how many of you want to live to be 100if you could stay reasonably healthy?" . Then she listed the reasons you might NOT want to -- No. 1 followed closely the lines of your post.

    Looking forward to your next post ;>> although I appreciate your sharing this one too. Food for thought.

  9. Yes Ma'am ... sadly that is part of the cycle. Then again, we can only be thankful that under all circumstances folks like you have lived, enjoyed and made most of your time productively and constructively amongst your dearest family and friends. God has His own Way of dealing with all of us. I pray those treasured friends of yours Good Strength and Will in coping.

  10. So sorry about your friends. We are seeing the same thing with ours. All we can do is be as supportive as we can and let them know we are there for them, count our blessings and live every day to the fullest. Wishing you all the best of good health.

  11. My husband retired a year ago, and we have been going ever since. We've bought some toys (for us and the grandkids to have fun with), and have decided that at this age you never know what's around the corner, healthwise, so we're not wasting time while we're in good health. It sounds like you have had many great times with your friends before the illlnesses. Thank heavens for wonderful memories!

  12. You, Bill, and all your friends are in my prayers Diane. I hope all are doing better soon. Old age is no fun sometimes.

    I just had a CT scan today of my previously injured right leg from last July 13th. They believe the reason I have not regained my walking more steady abilities and still having a lot of pain is because of the rod in there. The doc thinks one of the screws broke and the rod has shifted down into the knee.

    In summary, he wants to take the rod out now -- so I may be looking at more surgery. Hopefully we will know more with the CT scan soon.

  13. I was so busy with sorting out my pictures from Morocco that I missed this post. I so much agree with you although my problem is not the illness of the people, but their getting old ! They don't move anymore ! Mr. G. included. They only want to stay at home and watching TV. The women of my age live in the past and talk about "at my time" or are so busy with raising their grandchildren (because the parents work...) that they have no time for anything else. My best friend died last year of cancer very suddenly. I had to find other friends sharing the same interests like me. Now I have my little group of girlfriends, only one has the same age as I all the others are 10 years younger !
    Wanting to enjoy life and being sick that's the worst !

  14. So sad, Diane. I hope there is hope for recovery for all your friends.

    It is best to enjoy each day as none of us ever know.