Family Reunion

Recently, my elderly mother and I attended a family reunion. It was a pleasure to see my aunts and uncles, as well as several of my cousins. As is the case in every family, relatives develop increased health concerns with advanced age. I saw relatives using canes, rolling walkers, and wheelchairs.

In stark comparison, I was using no such assistive devices. Several commented on my appearance, saying that I looked like I was feeling well. I simply thanked them for their compliments.

I heard several of them complain about the hazards of advanced age. They cautioned me, “Don’t ever get old. Your body keeps just falling apart.” I happened to know that none of these individuals ever received disability benefits.

I didn’t share all of the MS symptoms that I was continuing to experience, despite looking relatively well. I also decided not to mention that I had to have another throat dilatation surgery, my 16th, since this same reunion, just one short year ago. It was just easier, once more, simply to keep my thoughts to myself.

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