If there’s one thing the many articles in the press are saying about New Year’s resolutions is that they’re never kept beyond January. Hmm. What do you think about this whole business of resolving to do something different, or better in the New Year?
Actually, I think Christmas has, sadly, become an over-indulgence in so many ways; there’s the over-eating; the over-socialising and the over-purchasing of presents. The whole thing makes me long to escape and go somewhere very quiet and peaceful. I think I’m talking about going away for Christmas – maybe I will one day!!!
So, yes, the New Year is a good time to reflect and re-evaluate some things in my life. Here’s a few ideas and issues that I’ve thought about over the first few days of January:
- Health as we age
Recently a dear friend of mine said to me that she refused to acknowledge her age. I think that’s great, because we should say ‘go take a running jump’ when 60+ women are put on the side-lines and/or considered ‘really old’. You know what I’m talking about! But I also believe that as we age we should take some responsibility for our ageing – so that we age healthily, and remain fit for as long as possible.
However, in the UK the NHS is not really about health, it deals instead with sickness. Well, of course, you might say, they’re so busy. Even so, I think we should get advice on remaining healthy but, on the whole, we don’t. Here’s an example; one of the things that happens to the really old are leg ulcers. I have thin legs and the skin on my shin is not of the thick variety. In order to prevent said ulcers I’ve asked both the nurse and my doctor what I should do. ‘Moisturise’ they say. ‘With what’ I reply? At that I get nothing useful. What. So. Ever. They don’t know.
Another example is that thing you get on your skin as you age. Don’t read on if you’re young, or of a delicate disposition. It’s kind of scabby and it won’t go away. And it’s not psoriasis, nor is it sun related as it appears first on your torso. I thought, well, this time I won’t waste my doctor’s time I’ll ask the pharmacist. I described my skin. Was it psoriasis? No, I said, it’s an age related skin condition. I got nothing but a blank look because the pharmacist. Did. Not. Know. Actually, I believe you could go to a private clinic and have laser treatment, but I can’t afford that. Mind you if these things ever got on to my face….
It’s the lack of local, inexpensive advice for healthy older people who want to stay that way that I’m talking about. Where to go? The ‘net’ of course, but there’s such a jumble of wacky stuff out there (which I can detect having been a nurse).
What to do? I’ve identified a need – any ideas?
Which brings me to exercise. I always say I go to the gym and do yoga but do I heck! I’ve always got some excuse. This time it was because our yoga class stopped. Then throughout October I had tooth trouble. I coughed my way through November with the ubiquitous virus that everyone had, and then it was December and all that Christmas stuff – I must have gone to the gym about twice in 3 months.
And what happened? My back seized up. And I know I scrub up well in a photo, but you should just see me first thing in the morning I was (and still am) bent over and slanting slightly to my right. After some exercises (yoga stretches) and a hot shower I begin to straighten up, but I saw someone I considered ‘old’ at a bus stop bent almost double over a stick, and I thought, that’ll be me in no time at all.
So, last Friday I went to my trusted osteopath (I don’t know why I left it so long) and he reassured me that there was nothing serious. It was just my muscles in spasm (he was a bit more technical). And while he leant in and dug his elbow into my derriere until tears ran out of my eyes, the answer to those tight muscles, dear reader, is not the osteopath, but me taking responsibility for my back, and doing as much exercise as I can manage. So it’s back to my seniors’ class at the gym twice a week and daily yoga in the morning – and not because I’m ‘good’ about exercise but because I want to stay healthy – and stand upright!
I have a lot of clothes – virtually none are new so clearing them out is not a problem. But I want to promise myself two things, and then give myself one reward.
First, I aim to buy fewer clothes. I say I don’t buy on the spur of the moment, or because it’s a bargain, but I’m sorry to admit I do buy like that at times. Stop!
Second, I’m going to try to buy entirely from charity shops. I think I can do it. What’ll be hardest is not replacing my skinny jeans bought from Primark, as Primark jeans fit my legs to perfection. At some point I’ll write more on this subject, but buying second-hand has to be an ethical as well as an economical choice.
And thirdly, this is an indulgence for my 70th birthday in June this year. Deep breath – I’ve ordered a bespoke designer dress from Masato (see it here, do have a look!) and I’ll go up to London for a fitting soon. I can’t be doing this all the time, but buying bespoke clothes must be far more carbon-neutral than the High Street. Perhaps once a year – you can’t take it with you, is how I see it!
And finally I resolve (and it will be done soon) to start another blog called ‘my other blog’ – watch this space!!!
Last of all, I aim to be up for anything: new challenges, new IT, new experiences.
But do let me know if you have any resolutions and if you have any ideas for 2016.
And if you’re new to the blog and read to the end (!) why not sign up to get my posts, which are approximately once a week – you’d be most welcome!
With love, Penny, the frugalfashionshopper