I am 55 years old and I have aches and pains; some have slowly crept up on me and others are due to injuries from exercising. In my 20s, 30s and even 40s I did not imagine I would have the aches and pains I have in my middle 50s. I understand the pains from the injuries that I experience every day, but the aches, the moving slower, the stiff joints, the loss of energy, will did these come from?
Ok, I know where some of it came from, those dreadful habits (post: Addictions or Habits or Routines) have resulted in some aches, but some of it is just part of the aging process. Most of my pains are caused by injuries; about 12 years ago I spent one summer playing water volleyball and this constant wear and tear on my shoulder took its toll. I believe I overused my rotator cuff muscles which lead to my shoulder pain I experience today. I remember when I first started feeling the pain in my shoulder; I was unable to sleep on my back in the bed. For about a year, I slept on a couch on my left side with my back against the back of the couch. I also had issues with the everyday activities and the pain I experienced certainly caused me to change my weight training habits. Several years after this, I believe I damaged my left rotator cuff during weight training most likely caused from my right shoulder’s inability to balance and lift which added unbalanced stress on my left shoulder.
I never visited a doctor and instead let the healing take its course. Today I most likely have scare tissue in my shoulder blades with the rotator cuffs never healing correctly. Every day I experience pain mostly on my predominant side, the right side. Depending on my previous day’s activities or the position when sleeping will dictate what pain I experience. The pain may be in my upper shoulders, shoulder blades, my arms or my lower back. Even when doing the everyday activities such as raising my arms to wash my hair can cause a re-injury, most likely a tear in the scar tissue that I then will have to endure the pain for several days. I deal with it but it is frustrating because it prevents me from undertaking some sporting activities that involve shoulder movement.
Middle age; aches and pains from injuries, stiff joints from arthritis, loss of energy most likely from those dreadful habits, but what other symptoms are there?
Symptoms of middle age are leaving behind the once young energetic, I can stay up all night and get little sleep and keep going practice. Gone, bedtime is early because I am tired and I need 7-8 hours of sleep. Bye-Bye younger man who had a little longer hair that with gel and when styled looked cute. Gone, the buzz hair is the style for me; easier to wash and maintain – no towel drying necessary. And the younger me looking good in those tight jeans and stylish clothes; everyone noticed. Gone, now its loose jeans, tee shirts and an oversized long sleeve shirt as a coat for winter and summer when I can get away with it – shorts only – that’s it.
Gone are the days I cared about how others viewed me – now today it is about how I view myself. The aches and pains of my life remind me who I am, where I have been and that I am getting older. And when reminded by the aches and pains that I am middle age, I am ok with that – I remind myself of all I have done, people I have loved and even though the younger energetic me is gone – I am still here living, kicking, breathing and appreciating the ride.