People resent growing old. I also resent, but in my particular case, mostly it is restricted to loss of my front teeth, loss of teeth gives one an ugly look which I really resent but having no way out I reconcile to the loss. Other wear and tear of age I have accepted, and do not resent. My hairs are mostly grey, I sport it proudly as I consider this as a mark of wisdom. My skin at this age of 67 has become loose, and soon it will be sagging, but still it is OK with me. Last 10 years I am everybody’s uncle on the road, and people generally respect me as a senior in age should generally command from around. In trains and buses in Mumbai, people offer me their seats in deference of my age. All in all my aging does not dipress me except that loss of my front row of teeth. True, I have artificial teeth to fill the empty gateway in my mouth but often I forget to put those on. Overall, there is a dryness in my look, contrasted with the flowing glamor that I used to have in my young age. This also depress me a bit. Most of the loss that I have just mentioned here is compensated by my habit of reading, internet surfing, endless capacity of talking to friends and writing my blog. Most of the time my sparkling pleasures that I get, supersedes any blues that occur to me due to the losses in looks in this old age.
None the less, there is a feeling of loss due to the weakening of the functional parts of the body due to aging. One after other organs of the body is weakening. The loss is gradual, but irreversible. First physical loss was impairment of eye-sight which I had at the age of 17 , before my final school leaving exam. At that time I could not see distant objects clearly– those appeared to me as blurred pictures. Exactly when this impairment of sight started, I did not have any consciousness of it. My father took me to a wayside spectacle seller of those days, who with his box-full of lenses, tested my eyes and sold a specks fitted with a power which in his judgement was OK or with what was the available best in his boxes. May be this gentlemen was only a technician, but for me he was a doctor. Initially, with the specks on, things would look glistening velvet- like, but with passage of time my eyes got adjusted to my glass. However, with the passage of time, my specks became a part of my body, silently it became as one additional limb in my system. To some people, having a specks on, gave an intellectual look, and I started enjoying that elevated status in my close friend circle. I did not have any sense of loss.
Things were moving well without any sense of physical loss, until one day, a downgrader invaded me, my blood pressure began to be high. So far I was used to periodically swallowing one or two entroquinal or saridon tablets to beat the occasional stomach upset or headache or tit-bits like these which never created any major and lasting problem for me. Till then the local pharmacist for all practical purposes, was my doctor, and I required nothing beyond.
This happiness did not last long, local doctor diagnosed me as suffering from high blood pressure, and prescribed medicine for my daily intake. At that time I was 48 years old, it was the first shock to me that I was no longer a normal healthy person. Henceforth, I would have to take medicine daily, I could not accept it. This struck me as a disability. I would often be depressed. It took me six months to reconcile to this permanent loss of health. Around this time pathological tests revealed that my cholesterol level was also high, so one more tablet to swallow. My spirit went down further. So, thus far, I had to take daily three tablet—one for blood thinner, one for blood pressure, the third for cholesterol. Till now no major food restriction.
This amount of regular medicine took me through till 63 years of age. At around this time a new kind of disease trying to have its clutch on me. Soon I would not find energy to do my daily work, and would remain exhausted throughout the day. Soon doctor diagnosed me as a diabetic, and put me under further dose of medicine. Now my tally of impairment is high blood pressure, cholesterol, and the fresh addition is diabetic. From now on I started feeling the real loss. Swallowing medicine in correct time daily has become a must, add to this food restriction. First casualty was rasogolla. Sweeets have been favourite to me from early childhood; with diabetes I had to stop taking sweets altogether. Intake of Chapattis, rice also had to be drastically reduced. All these suddenly made me an old man. During my life I was always a smart young man, with abundant energy, willing to take up any challenges. My energies would be appreciated by one and all. On top of it I was loved by relatives and friends alike. Therefore, my spirits used to be always high, but with diabetes, I started feeling a great loss, an addition of disability. Now a basket of medicine is always my companion, I can ignore food but ignoring medicine I can never think of. Sometimes innocent uncomfortable thoughts, memory of wrong decisions from past life come up which I cannot get rid of.
I talk to my mind always. I understand nobody has control over one’s body and diseases which afflicts it. I am now 67, there are people at 72, 75 or 89……… they are pulling on well, then why not me? My ancestors lived till ninety years. Such thinking rejuvenates me and helps me to reconcile whenever I am down, then I am filled with energy to start afresh.
I have found reading helps me. I have a habit of reading from Books borrowed from British Library or from online books in the internet. Started listening recorded lectures of OSHO on upanishads. I find OSHO a great charger, he refills me with abundant energy to understand life and the society. I become strong from within. OSHO is a highly misunderstood man, but is the only man who helps me to see the real truth in this stage of life. I have many other interests in life. I have some knowledge of PHOTOSHOP. With the knowledge of photo shop I design photos for publishing photos in my blog. I have some knowledge in music technology where I can play with music tracks with various mixing of tracks. I do not claim that I have professional knowledge in this fields, but still those amateurish knowledge fills me with pleasure. ALL THESE TO SOME EXTENT COMPENSATES MY LOSS OF LOOKS DUE TO LOSS OF TEETH.