This time of the year, mid winter, time seems to stand still. There is not a lot to do. A dull grey day doesn't encourage me to do much, a bit of gardening if it is sunny, a few hours in the shopping centre if it is raining. A lot of my spare time I read, get onto my computer, watch some television, often cooking programs rather than movies or dramas. I usually crochet as I watch TV so just look up occasionally to see what the dish being cooked looks like. I get out as much as I can and as much as the weather permits.
I am okay with the quiet life of an older widow but sometimes long for those long gone days when the family still lived close. My scattered family of course are busy living their own lives. Mostly I hear from one at least in a week and it's a good week when I've had a couple of phone calls. Of course there are people I see regularly, at Church, meetings, Bible Study, Coffee, Craft and Chat, Lions Club dinners and the occasional lunch out with girlfriends, which is naturally rarer in winter. But like me most of them are also widowed.
Just for the next few weeks I have added a new group, Stepping On. It is a Falls Prevention program for older people run by the local Health Department. Most people attending are closer to 80 than 70, and like me thought it would maybe help improve their walking. Since I have had the Melanoma removed and then the lymph glands in that left leg and left side of my lower torso also removed I have been less steady on my feet so I thought that any small improvement in my walking would be good.
In the course of the program there are consultants talking to us and to my surprise it was the podiatrist who looked closest at my movements and made a suggestion. She said I needed to work on my calf muscles as strong calf muscles would make up for the difference between the weight of my two legs that had altered my gait. My left leg without the lymph glands can gain up to two kilos on a humid day and there is no medical remedy for that. How much difference it will make I don't know but anything that helps me feel more confident walking will be good
I went to a funeral recently and met up with a family I'd known for many years. The son shook my hand and I told him how much we'd enjoyed his family's visits when they came on camping trips to Karuah before my family moved back here, he was about fifteen at that time. He surprised me by asking if I wanted to see a picture of his grandkids. I thought " What the?" and then realised the time I was talking about was forty years ago! It seemed only a short time ago to me. How time flies!
I wonder if there are still good times ahead for me. I hear other people, mainly couples, talking about cruising, trips overseas, going around Australia in their caravan and think "That is what Ray and I planned to do." And I sigh. Then I realised that Ray would have been 81 now! Wow! That lovely young man I married would be 81 now? Unbelievable. Because in my mind Ray will always be 70, the age he was when he died. I look in the mirror and see and old lady looking back at me but to me Ray will always be young. Strange life isn't it?