Thursday, February 25, 2021

The Reality of Being a Tita (Midlife Musings)

I enjoyed a prolonged period when my body stayed the same. I wore XS well into my late 30s. I enjoyed it because I could eat anything and never gained weight. The real reason though why I wasn't gaining weight was because my body was compensating for the issue I had with my heart. Eventually I became too thin and that signaled I needed to have my mitral valve repaired. 

My doctor warned me after surgery that I needed to watch my weight. I immediately gained 15 pounds within a few months, but it wasn't so bad then. Many said I actually looked healthier with a little more weight. I went into a frenzy of activities four months after heart surgery. I wanted to prove I was well and I used the newfound energy like crazy. I was 38 then living like a 25 year old. 

At some point I started to notice changes in my whole being. It was both physical and psychological. Here's what I went through:

Weight gain and bulges - gone were the days I could eat anything and not gain weight. I once stayed in Bacolod for a week, the weight I gained there never went away (it's still residing in my thighs!). The bulk of my weight though crept up when I had my first pulmonary embolism. The PE severely affected my ability to exercise and move around. 

Energy and stamina - I was still quite okay after heart surgery. I traveled a lot and was able to keep up with the rigors of running events, hopping from one place to another. I could fly in and go straight to work or an event. Things changed drastically when I had my first PE. Physiotherapy has been helping me regain lost energy and increase my stamina. I'm still hoping I could improve my quality of life.

Health - I know I'm an oddball and I experience things that most people won't go through. It's about this time that your body will need special attention. It can be your back, your joints, your BP, cholesterol etc. Despite my many issues I'm still lucky I don't have any hard food requirements (whew!). 

Interests - with lower energy and stamina my interests changed as well. I realized this when I traveled with friends who are younger than me. I couldn't keep up with them and had to park myself somewhere while they went around. 

Social Life - my health severely affected my social life. I used to like going out to eat or have coffee with friends. I also like having friends over to sample my cooking. I haven't been able to do this for a long time now since I've been sick. It's been a few months since I've been able to do a video call too. 

Hobbies - since I've become more of a homebody I picked up my old hobby of quilting. I'm so glad my Mom taught me how to keep busy with crafts. I've also taken a liking to honing my gardening and bread baking skills too. I'm never not busy at home and there's always something new to learn. 

Salonpas is a must have - my high school girlfriends and I always joke about the many balms, salonpas and essential oils we now have on hand. I have a friend who also gave me a glowing review of her heat lamp. When you start using these things you normally keep it to yourself for as long as you can and it eventually just becomes funny and you giggle about it with friends. 

Identity - I have a friend who always tells me I have mastered the art of dedma. I think I'm at that age when I could just keep the noise out. I know who I am and the values I keep. 

I know there are still many changes that would come. I should have probably asked my siblings about midlife since they're both more than a decade older than me. I'm glad I have my high school girlfriends going through the same phase as me. My doctor recently noted on his report that I am on pre-menopause phase already. OMG! That thought never crossed my mind and this is something me and my girlfriends have started to muse about. Oh my! Haha. 

I'm so grateful I have friends and family who understand my oddballness. It makes life easier. If you ask me I'd rather be in my 40s than be in my 20s. And that thought probably deserves a post for another day. 

What about you? Are you experiencing midlife? How are you coping?

CB///322 #StuckAtHomeDay/352 #StayHome #BeKind

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