Shopping for estimates is time consuming! I feel that about all I get done, since I reached mid-life, is to run around to various doctors’ offices to get estimates to repair some part or piece of my body.
It’s much like owning a car. About the time you get one thing repaired, another tears up. Even when you make a special effort to keep it clean, serviced, and fueled, high mileage catches up and you have to either patch it up or trade it in for a newer model. Turning back the clock so that I regain my youth isn’t an option, so my only choice is for a tune-up and/or repair, or as I say…since I can’t make it look much better, I can keep it from getting worse.
Mid-life is a trip! I’m not talking about the years it takes to get there, but what happens once you arrive. Hormones fluctuate or leave. You inner self finds its way to the outside, around your middle. The teeth that once glistened in the sunlight now drop to the bottom of the jar on the bedside table. The hair that you used to have to shave almost daily is gone from your legs and underarms and made its way to your upper lip or chin. And all of this happens if you’re normal! This doesn’t include any bumps in the road or in your sagging breasts.
I taught a seminar for group fitness instructors and personal trainers recently for the Aerobic and Fitness Association of America (AFAA).. The seminar is titled “Midlife Fitness for Women”. The seminar agenda called for a 9:00am-5:00pm time-line. One comment was, “Why not talk only about the positive aspects of reaching mid-life?” My response was, “Because, we would have been finished by 9:03!”
Honestly, this is the best time of my life! My children are grown and self-supporting. My husband makes me laugh almost every day. And, I get to do what I love to do and make a reasonable living doing it. So what if the old six pack of abs are hidden under my mid-life crisis? I can still exercise intensely, as long as there is someone close by who knows CPR! I’m just teasing. I can still exercise vigorously; I just need to recognize the fact that my body needs more recovery time than it did ten years ago.
Whether or not you are at this stage in your life, we must put our bodies into perspective. What do I mean by that? I mean…place our body right in there with a healthy mind and spirit. The three must work in harmony and balance to get through mid-life or any other time in our lives.
As I was sitting in the dentist’s chair yesterday, it occurred to me that in America we practice segmented fitness. To illustrate my point, I was thinking that, though we go to different doctors for different ailments or treatments, they are all a segment of the whole. You know-the shin bone is connected to the leg bone and the leg bone is connected to the hip bone – and so on and so forth. However, most of us don’t approach our health or fitness with this in mind. Much like our automobile…we take it to one place for an oil change, another for a tune-up, and another for tires. All of these are important stops to result in a smooth running vehicle, just as preserving and maintaining our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health requires a plan of action. Regular check ups and preventive maintenance are essential.
From the doctor’s office we go outdoors or to the gym for a bit of physical activity, and later in the week to church for a spiritual check-up. We tend to view taking care of the mind, body, and spirit as three separate issues, as opposed to each being a part of the whole person.
So what’s wrong with that? Nothing really, except that we never seem to connect the dots. We never seem to get that we can eat right and get all the exercise we need, but if we don’t manage the stress in our life, we can’t be healthy. And, it is vital to take care of our spiritual well-being. What better ay to reduce the stress in our life than by casting our burdens and cares on God and let him handle them? By the same token, if we spend all of our time with our noses stuck in Bible study and meditation and none keeping our body healthy, we are going to get sick or lose our quality of life due to lack of physical activity and then what good are we for ministry?
How did I get from mid-life to preaching! Blame it on the hormones. Mid-life has many positive aspects and benefits. I intend to experience them all and with as healthy a body, mind, and spirit as I can muster. Adopting a positive mental attitude is half the battle.
I misplace things all the time and I can’t remember whether I’m coming or going, but wherever I’m headed, I am going to enjoy the trip!