A Hitch in Your Gitalong

This blog is written by Lee Gale Gruen to help Baby Boomers, seniors, and those soon to retire find joy, excitement, and satisfaction in life after retirement. Her public lecture on this subject is titled, “Reinventing Yourself in Your Retirement.” Her memoir, available by clicking here Amazon.com, is: Adventures with Dad: A Father and Daughter’s Journey Through a Senior Acting Class. Click here for her website: http://AdventuresWithDadTheBook.com

CHITCHAT:  I will be giving free public lectures titled: “Reinventing Yourself in Your Senior Years” on the following dates, times, and locations (RSVP REQUIRED):

April 13, 2018, 1:00pm, Covenant Village of Turlock Retirement Community, 2125 N. Olive Ave, Turlock, CA 95382, (209)-226-4621, www.covenantvillageofturlock.org/events

July 19, 2018, 10:30am, Covenant Village of the Great Lakes Retirement Community, 2510 Lake Michigan Dr NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504 (616) 259-0408, www.covenantgreatlakes.org/events

October 16, 2018, 1:00pm, The Holmstad Retirement Community, 700 W. Fabyan Pkwy, Batavia, IL 60510, (630) 239-1133,  www.theholmstad.org

October 17, 2018, 10:30am, Windsor Park Retirement Community, 124 Windsor Park Dr, Carol Stream, IL 60188, (331) 218-3637, www.windsorparkillinois.org

October 19, 2018, 10:30am, Covenant Village of Northbrook, 2625 Techny Rd, Northbrook, IL 60062, (224) 412-8421, www.covenantnorthbrook.org

Now, on to my blog:

Motorized Wheel ChairMany of you may remember Gabby Hayes who was an actor in Western films in the 1930s and 1940s. He often played a wizened, cantankerous old coot who was the sidekick or cook on cattle drives. In one of those roles, he had a limp and explained when asked about it, “I got a hitch in my gitalong.”

We all develop a hitch in our gitalongs of one sort or another in our later years. We might not limp, but we slow down. We can’t walk as far as we used to. Maybe our hips hurt, or our knees, calves, shins, ankles, soles, heels, toes, whatevers. Maybe our stamina is not as long lasting as it was decades earlier. Maybe our mental capacity isn’t as cooperative.

Whatever the reason, don’t drop out; seek help. There are all types of assistive devices such as canes, walkers, wheelchairs, etc. The man in this photo riding on his motorized wheelchair is not letting his hitch stop him. He is boogieing along, enjoying what the outdoors offers.

Too many people become reclusive as seniors, not wanting to display or even admit their various hitches. Many become depressed or withdrawn, embarrassed for others to see them as they’ve aged.  Don’t do that; be kind to yourself. What would you say to someone else you saw doing such a thing? Wouldn’t you encourage him/her to move forward, hitch and all?

We must grab life with whatever means we have. Some of us have more capabilities than others. If you are not disabled, don’t take that for granted. Be mindful of how fortunate you are, as not everyone is. If you are disabled, technology makes it easier for you to embrace life.

Take a walk whether it’s with your own legs or your own wheels. Observe the bounty that nature puts forth. A wildflower growing at the edge of the road can be a thing of great beauty viewed with the right perspective.

We all have a finite time of life.  We, also, have choices. Choose how you are going to live your remaining years, months, days, hours, minutes. If you decide to squander them on “poor me” behaviors, own the fact that you made that decision.

You are not committed to your choice in perpetuity.  You can revise it at any time which, of course, is another choice. Utilize whatever is available to assist you. There is no shame in that. Wheels versus legs still yield the same exquisite wildflower.


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Filed under active seniors, Baby boomers, gerontology, health and wellness, healthy aging, longevity, reinvention, retirement, seniors, successful aging, wellness

6 responses to “A Hitch in Your Gitalong

  1. Loved this piece. Invigorating ideas— very motivating to get up & get out there. Keep the good thoughts coming. And, congrats on your lineup of speaking engagements. Your thoughts & ideas are truly helping folks. That must be so satisfying.

  2. Roger Trammell

    Very timely for me, LGG, since my hip replacement and back surgery have played heck with my balance. I toddle along at home where I can catch myself with walls and furniture but outdoors requires a cane. It’s embarrassing, since I’ve always been so athletic but no one defeats Father Time.

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