Friday, August 21, 2009

Hanging With the Dlos

Years ago my mom was friend with a younger woman who used to call the old, character-y ladies she would see around the neighborhood Dlo. As in, O-L-D but D-L-O, to be nice I guess. Mom has taken to referring to herself over the years as a Dlo. She and Dad arrived yesterday for a brief visit on their way to vacation, using LA as a stopover in a long trip. As you can surmise from a previous post, my father is also a Dlo. And he opted not to go to a local barber ($15 for a cut, $20 for a fade, no senior discount) but instead was thrilled I have a buzzer so I could clean up his neck and the back of his hair.

Dad, while limber and quite willing, has probably slowed down a little bit. If I'm twenty-one, Dad remains somewhere between twenty-nine and thirty-three, contrary to what the light grey and white bits of hair that fell to the floor as I shaved his neck would indicate. Mom, on the other hand, has slowed down a lot. She is willing but no longer able to attempt the movement she used to take for granted. She can not walk for long without feeling pain in her back and legs. She used to walk all the time. Now, we sit around the living room discussing what we can do for fun that doesn't involve much mobility. She looks good, but...

It's hard to witness life speeding along so intently. It can be shocking. Certainly it's easier when you see a person every day, but when you only see him or her sporadically throughout the year, the changes are more obvious. The gait, slower. The hair, whiter. The ornery, ornerier.

I suppose the same can be said of me. I've got lines on my face that didn't show themselves ten years ago. And my back - it hurts when I've been standing or walking for a long time. Did it used to do this?

And why the hell does "Sunrise, Sunset" keep playing in my head?

We're all dying from the day we are born, as they say. I just wish knowing it wasn't sometimes so hard.

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