An alert reader has sent Life in the Boomer Lane an article from purpleclover.com titled "17 Surprises Your Body Has in Store for You Post 50." By the time LBL was finished reading the title, she had come up with over 30 items of her own. But she will now address herself to the items in the article. LBL is well aware of how valuable your time is, as well as how many of you are already teetering on the brink of a suicidal depression over aging. For those reasons, she will limit herself to only the following:
1. Food will taste different
Those over 50 may find it necessary to salt their foods even more than they used to, as taste buds have, like facial collagen, withered and disappeared. LBL has noticed this. She now supplements her normal salt intake with weekly movie theater popcorn and is considering taking a guided tour of all national salt licks.
2. Your cravings will change
"Many adults over 50 report being caught off guard by food cravings they'd never experienced. Shifting hormones are the likely culprit, as taste preferences are known to fluctuate with our hormones. Dips in the brain chemical serotonin, for example, are known to up the desire for cookies, chips and other tempting treats."
LBL, spoon firmly planted in the pint of coffee Haagen Dazs, was caught off guard with this item. While she has closely monitored the uptick in her penchant for chocolate and ice cream, she has neglected her desire for chips and cookies. As soon as she finishes writing this post, she will make an emergency trip to Safeway to stock up.
3. Getting out of bed in the morning will be more difficult
"A lifetime of wear and tear really starts to take over from 50 onward. That's because your muscles, ligaments and tendons are simply not as strong as they were 10 or 20 years ago."
Many men over age 50 have solved this problem by falling asleep in front of the TV. If they are in a Barcalounger, they can then catapult themselves to an upright position in just several seconds.
The rest of us can adhere to the "I am Lady Crawley, Mistress of Downton Abbey," system of rising from bed. Have a servant bring you your breakfast tray in bed each morning. You can then bring yourself to a seated position, propped up by several large, very expensive down pillows. You may then leisurely eat and, after consuming your food, be ready to stand. Your servant will then deal with the toast crumbs and smears of butter and jelly that are all over your bed.
4. Opening that jar or stuck window will take more oomph
LBL has now accumulated an entire array of devices to open bottles and jars. She has come to the conclusion that it is easier to change her diet than to wage war each day with food products that are hermetically sealed. Thankfully, snack bags are much easier to open.
5. You'll need to shorten your pants length
The article explains that, because of spinal compression, our legs seem to shorten. While LBL acknowledges that she knows little about human anatomy, aside from a belief that her head looks really bad in hats, this statement confuses her. Under normal circumstances, LBL's pants do not come up to her neck. Wearing pants at her waist means that only a small portion of her spine in involved. She fails to see how compression of that small area results in her having to now wear Capris as long pants.
6. When you've got to go, you've really got to go OR
7. You won't be able to do your business when you need to
LBL will now address items 6 and 7 together. She will start by saying that if you translate #7 to mean you have a computer malfunction at your job, you are under age 50. Go away. Now that only us over-50s are here, LBL will talk turkey to you: Items 6 and 7 are cosmic jokes of nature, perpetrated on an innocent population who never did anything bad to anybody and who was nice to her mother (except for going away to college when her mother wanted her to attend a college in Philly so she could live at home).
8. Mysterious aches will appear and annoy
"Nagging knees, achy feet, throbbing back, inflamed tendons -- people in their 50s seem to collect body aches like badges."
LBL is now losing a lot of sleep because of exactly that. She threatened Now Husband that, if he continues to thrash around in bed, she will sleep in the guest room.
9. Your brain won't work as quickly
According to the article, we now can't recall facts, words, and quickly as quickly as we did before. It is suggested that we learn to write with the opposite hand, as a way to teach our brains to fire in new ways. LBL, herself, hasn't actually used handwriting in about seven years. She tried to write checks with her left hand, but they all bounced, or, on one occasion, her electric bill payment coincided with the entire amount of her SEP IRA. She now pays her bills online and has eliminated all need to write.
10. Your sex life will be different
The article clearly states that "different" doesn't mean "worse." This is essentially what Frankenstein's mom told him on his first day of school. But, because LBL is, on at least two days a year, a glass half full person, she will take this statement optimistically.
"In fact, many men and women in their 50s report enjoying sex more than they ever did as a wild, young thing. Yes, women may need to deal with vaginal dryness and men may discover their erections are less firm and take longer to rise.But experts say this physical need to spend more time becoming fully aroused can bring you and your partner more in sync."
Concentrating on the glass half full thing, couples can now take full advantage of the above. While your male partner readies himself, you have time to cook tonight's dinner. Or, while your female partner readies herself, you may sneak off to watch football with the guys. Just make sure you meet back in the bedroom at the same time.
Masochists who need more abuse may refer to the entire article. But don't say LBL didn't warn you.