communication has no gaps. Generations co-exist quite nicely. That's my goal in life. To co-exist with all women and bridge any gaps that may appear.
So, let's talk about canes. No woman with any desire to be fashionable wants to use a cane. We don't use them to gain sympathy or to get a handicap parking tag for our cars. We use them so we don't end up with a handicap tag on our car.
I enjoy chatting with gals of all ages but some kiddos have a tendency to shy away from grey-haired ladies with canes. Strangers seem to think a cane is synonymous with senility. Not so. Trust me... I've been tested. Others think you must be ready for a wheelchair (that'a story for another day).
Some kids distance themselves from grannies with canes-- we're embarrassing. Not my grandkids. They just think it's another appendage. Annoying as it is to me to keep up with that doggone thing, it serves a purpose when my ankles play games with my legs and break my stride before my mind wants to stop. I need a little support for weak muscles and balance-- that's all.
I'm working on it though. Right after Christmas, I bought some 3-pound leg weights to strap to my ankles so I can do leg lifts while I sit and watch the morning news. One of these days-- before I croak, I'll get around to using them. Then maybe I won't have to use my cane as often.
It does comes in mighty handy when I want to close my kitchen curtains. Beats getting on a stool and chancing a fall where I'd have no one to hear me cry, "I've fallen and can't get up." No, I don't have one of those little gizmos...but I'm thinking about getting one. Just in case. Older folks tend to buy things, just in case.
There's one thing I've learned about canes. People treat you differently when you use a cane. Most get out of your way, and say they're sorry if they walk in your pathway. Some adults, male and female, let you go in the door before them-- some adults--not all. But the cutest thing is watching children who notice you. They tug on that heavy door, plant their little bodies in front of it and become human doorstops. They always say "your welcome", when I thank them. Mommas are teaching those children wisely.
Then there's the downside of canes. Some folks are oblivious. They step on the bottom of it as I walk forward, and I'll have to catch myself from falling because my cane is stuck behind me. That can get scary in a mall or church hallway. It's not their fault... not many folks walk around with three legs, ya know. Most folks aren't looking down when they walk behind someone, they're looking ahead at eye-level...so they won't see a cane until they accidently step on it. I've learned to be very tolerant-- and also very vigilant.
As annoying as a cane can be, they can also be quite dangerous. I don't use it when there's rain on the walks or snow on the parking lot. It doesn't have very good traction, slips right out from under me. I've learned to walk very slowly, kinda like the Conway shuffle. I know, I'm dating myself with Tim Conway comedy sketches-- Tim use to pretend he was an old old man and he'd shuffle his feet like one of those plastic toys that walk off a table top when you hang a weighted string over the edge.
I about fell on my face in an airport restroom one time. The floor in front of the sink had drops of water on it and of course I plunked my cane on a drip and it slipped and I had to grab the counter. Lucky for me I have a bunch of people in my life who pray for me daily. Think they cover my angels' itinerary in situations like that. So far, I haven't tumbled or made a fool of myself.
It's hard thing getting older. Depending on canes is the least of our aggravations. the hardest part is accepting we really need one. That's the gap I'm really learning to bridge...between the young me and the old me. C'est la vie.
[for those of you who aren't familiar with Tim's shuffle, see video below.]