Thursday, December 06, 2018

Where Forgiving Myself Is Working Better Than Being Irked

"Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness..."   ... Romans 8:26


So. This aging lady is noticing certain annoying patterns.

I'll step down two stairs with, say, laundry then suddenly remember, "Darn! I originally came up here for some candles." Then I'll climb back up, feel all exasperated at myself, roll my eyes, grab the candles, balance the laundry then head downstairs.

All while feeling perturbed with this aging brain of mine.

Or, intending to visit the coffee shop, I'll step outside the back door, lock it, step away, then notice I'd slipped on my (smooshed and ugly) gardening shoes just inside the door, not my decent walking shoes from the drawer.

You should hear me (well, perhaps not) mutter under my breath as I search for my keys in the depths of my book bag so I can unlock the door.

Or I'll go online to (finally) answer an email then--20 minutes later--get up to vacuum then realize, "Oh! I did everything online except answer that email."

And that signals a fresh, lively round of, "Man, Debra. Get a grip! Use your brain (or what's left of it). Sheesh."

That is, until 3 months ago. That's about when I decided to just relax. Show myself some patience--and forgiveness.

And that (as they say) has made all the difference.

See, I made a decision: I do not want to spend my later years being mad at myself. Looking back from Heaven, I'd be horrified at the waste of that.

So I'm making changes. If I step down stairs having forgotten something? Unless it's life and death (which it never is), I--

Let it go. 
Forgive myself. 
Repeat, "I'm only human."
Make a mental note to later bring down/do what I'd forgotten.

If my distractions made me forget what even sat me down in this computer chair? Ditto.

If I slipped on The Ugly Shoes, instead? Well, ok. I'd change those. heh. But with forgiveness, not a head-shaking curse.

And basically, that's it. Rather than get mad at myself (or this aging process) I'm choosing to chill. To treat myself with the gentleness I'd give to a grandmother. And maybe, just maybe, this is aiding my memory, as well.

And yes, I'm also applying--

Memory tricks. 
Changes to ways I've always done various things.
Researching vitamins that we 'of a certain age' may require 
And asking God to help me recall what really matters.

You know. It's not like I'm being all que sera sera about this.

But my point? Life is short and too precious to spend it perturbed, frustrated with ourselves. Or others. And from that other side of Heaven may I not gaze back, horrified, that I treated my aging self poorly.

So I will forgive Older Debra her weaknesses. I'll do (and learn) what I can, make changes, then ask God to do what I cannot. 

And then? I'll choose to be happy, grateful for today and for the memory I still have left. シ

Oh, and I'll trust God that--until He uploads my shiny,improved memory in Heaven--all will be well, wonderful even, as only He can make it.

"God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble."  ...Psalm 46:1

Be kind to yourself.

Oh, and as I told a friend at Facebook --

It also encourages me to remember what someone on Oprah said:" It's not Alzheimers if you forget your keys. It might be ,though, if you forget what keys *are used for*". Whew.  😉


I'm a proponent of trying new things and for a week? I kept my To Do List online. 

I enjoyed deleting tasks after completing them.

But uh-oh--- for me, it's back to writing things down on tablet paper. Why? Because of course, first you've gotta check Facebook or email or Twitter before consulting the list, right? But then oodles of minutes later--I'd 'wake up'. And realize I'd not even peeked at the list.

And then I'd mentally kick myself over my online distractions weakness.

So yeah. I'm back to using little tablet papers--and am actually getting things accomplished again. Imagine.

Do what works for you. Even if you are laughed at.  シ


I'm keeping notes of things learned from experience on My Road To 60. Wrote this one down two weeks ago --

You learn you must slow down. Your thinking, your movements, like getting up out of a chair or being careful not to spin or change your direction in a hurry.

Hey, I aim to be mentally prepared for that 60th birthday unlike when my 50th came around and knocked me over. heh.



Oh! And if you've read down this far--

Could you please pray for Tom? He's in Oklahoma on business and he may have to cut his trip short (or stay longer) because an ice storm is moving in sooner than thought and we're both trying not to worry.

So, uhm, if you could pray he'll make the right decision (and that we won't be all stressed), well, we'd appreciate it. Thank-you!

*Update: Tom arrived home safely! The ice storm held off longer so he was able to leave as scheduled. We both really appreciate your prayers--thanks so much!



Rebecca said...

Praying for your Tom...and identifying with you. Oh! it's my 70th coming up in 20 days! You think YOU'VE got challenges?!? 😄

Pam said...

This was such an uplifting post! Of course we're going to change, so we might as well accept it and try our best to work WITH those changes (easier said than done, though). I always appreciate your honesty and your determination to stay positive! I will definitely pray for Tom's safety.

Anonymous said...

This is another great post Debra. I’m also coming up on 60 and I have the same challenges you do. I have to remember to be as kind to myself as I would be to others, just as you stated. Since I’m almost aday behind in reading this, I’m hoping Tom is either safely home or safely in Oklahoma, staying put. But I will pray for him Because I don’t know where he is. And I probably wouldn’t remember anyway! Ha! Many blessings, Betsy

Anonymous said...

Yes I will also pray for Tom and the situation.

I used to make lists and forget where the lists were...but now I keep a steno pad and only one with lists on it and another notepad{different looking] by the tv for all the bits of info I see I want to write down from books or tv etc. Like .coms and book titles and authors names and such. The notebook stays in One place. The place I am by the most.

We forget also that we have always forgotten things. Even at 6 years old. Now that we are aging we think everything odd we do is new and because of aging. Not so. Yes just go back and redo or get such thing you forgot. No use getting angry at yourself..who but you notices? It is just life. Please though Debra let us in on any research you try to keep your memories alive and kicking at high speed. :-)

My aging problem seems to be speech. {and yes remembering what I came in the room for etc etc. :) } I am talking to someone and can't remember what word I want to say next. I can see the object and relate to it but the right word often does not come. I often have to substitute a word. I have been told by someone there is a name for this but not what that word is .:) I will research to see if anything I can do to help myself. I will soon be 73.

Time is closing in and we have no idea what to get for Christmas for 4 in our family. We give gifts of service or material things etc but this year our ideas are 0. : (( Then there is the holiday dinner no one has decided on....

I just heard a teen onto saying her mother said she does not have enough $ for presents she is thinking of getting a loan. NO !!!! Those loan places on so many corners have such high interest she will never pay for this years presents. Growing up some years we gave each other coupons we made that said we would baby sit for one family member and weed the garden of another cost and things they needed too. They could cash in the coupons when they wanted. This also had the added benefit of visiting that family member when we did it. When she was 12 my little sister worked a whole year doing a simple embroidery stitch on a set of pillow cases as a gift. 60 years later I still use those cases. Love is very bright at Christmas. He started it. Sarah

Debra said...

Rebecca--thanks so much for your comment which made me giggle!

Pam-- love that 'working WITH the changes' idea!

Betsy--isn't it wild how being kind to ourselves sounds rather foreign sometimes?(!)

Sarah--thanks for sharing your ideas with us!

And Everyone, thanks so much for praying for Tom. I really believe those prayers made a difference in his arriving safely home and as scheduled! Blessings, Debra