Broken, Not Defeated

Amy Bryant, Age 80

“Amy, at our age we can’t be doing what we did when we were younger. We have to slow down.”
“Say what!”

I had just told my friend that I was recovering from surgery on a shattered wrist, resulting from a tennis accident, and right away she jumped to the age factor.

Like many of us who became fans of 70 Candles in our seventies, I now light 80 candles on my cake.
Prior to the mishap, I was a lively ol’ gal. Zumba three times a week, tennis three times a week, walking a mile a day in one of Florida’s parks, trails, or bayside streets, and dancing in the club once or twice a week. That makes six active days. On the seventh, I went down to the local resort, stretched out poolside in the sun with a glass of wine, and luxuriated with a free conscience.

Our family is no stranger to broken bones. My daughter’s broken arm at 10 while skating. my grandson’s broken finger at 20 while rock climbing, and then my other daughter’s broken hand at 49 while skiing. Funny, there was no mention of an age factor when evaluating their breaks. Nobody cautioned, you’re ten, be careful, you’re 20 slow down, you’re 49 best find a more passive activity. We’re an athletic family and broken bones come from being athletic at any age.

When I turned 70, I followed the role model and the advice of my mother, make younger friends. About a third of my friends are my age. The rest are in their fifties to mid-sixties. So when they heard of my mishap, their responses were: “You’ve got this, Amy.” “You’re a rock star.” “You’ll be back on the courts in no time.” “Your arm may be broken, but not your spirit.”

Don’t feel sorry for me with my broken bones. Remember:
I’m an 80-year-old athlete . . . and a rock star! I’ll see you on the court.

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13 Responses to Broken, Not Defeated

  1. Bonnie Staughton says:

    “Good for you” to all of you who just “keep going” whatever your age. I’m 73 and slowed down my exercise this Winter due to just plain bad moodiness due to staying in so much due to Covid rules and the “wet” Winter we have been having. But, I have a horse (he’s 26 and a “golden oldie” like me) and I see him 2 times a week and either ride or walk with him on the trails. That’s my exercise and my happiness with being outside and with my “baby”. My sister, who is 71, told me she is afraid I’ll fall from my horse. I did take a bad fall a number of years ago. But, I fell a couple weeks ago (neither Mystery or I were paying attention) but got back up and rode some more. One hip was a little sore but otherwise I was fine. You just have to keep doing what you love and making due with the occasional aches and pains of age. I’d NEVER tell someone that they needed to slow down or stop doing something they love due to their age and I hope no one every tells me. We are all different even if the same age and I would hope we know the consequences of putting ourselves at risk. I love the story of the horsewoman, can’t remember her name or age, but I think she was in her 90’s and still riding her horses. When she died they found her on the trail leaning against a tree with her horse standing over her. She died doing what she loved.

  2. Miriam Savir says:

    To be proud of the fact that a third of one’s friends are a generation younger than oneself hints of ageism. It is well known that America is obsessed with youth and all it is supposed to mean. It is also certainly admirable to be physically active in one’s ninth decade. But there are many in and around the magic age of 80 who are valuable individuals who do not need to go white water rafting, rock climbing or parachute jumping to maintain their sense of worth. You can find them volunteering in hospitals, in schools and other organizations. They help care for their spouses, grandchildren and friends who need a little extra attention. They garden, read, learn new skills and new languages, take courses and perhaps most important, pass on their legacy to the next generation. Let us not loose site of all we can learn from these most valuable of senior citizens.

  3. Tomorrow’s my birthday 74! At eye dr getting an appt for cataract surgery.
    Prolia shot Monday…Looking to fire the elusive Covid vaccine.
    No time for much exercise like I use to…I was a machine. Now I must work as a Realtor…my husband Realtor sees people, I do loads of paperwork. We are both suited to do what we do…he hates paperwork, I tire of people easily. I am an introvert and love it.
    NYT offered a pen pal service for anyone. Letters only no emails or texts. I love the idea…Wrote my first letter today…Hope it gets answered.
    Old stuff is cool again.

    • Blog Mavens says:

      Happy Birthday to you Patty,
      You’ll be amazed and delighted with results of cataract surgery. The world’s colors become beautifully vivid.
      It’s great that you and your husband have found the perfect balance in your work together. A good team.
      Let us know how the pen pal exchange proceeds. What a good idea! Sounds like a a fine antidote in this strange time of isolation.
      Stay well,
      Jane and Ellen

  4. Lisa Fromm-Sarto says:

    While I know our bodies decline with age, I believe our spirit continues to grow. That spirit allows us to thrive at any age and in any circumstance.

  5. Patricia Damron says:

    Great story! Whatever and however you are living is the right way to go. I wish you many more years of fun and movement.

  6. Syd Harper says:

    I enjoy this blog very much and started reading it today after I tried to do some ballet exercises Jeté and plié. I did great until I switched sides and than I started to slip. Will do more later today because I, too am athletic and will not be bound to a chair. Age doesn’t matter, if able do what you want. I will be 85 in September and hope to greet it with a long walk and some ballet jumps.

  7. Evelyn eskin says:

    You go, girl!!! Love your ‘tude!!!!

  8. Julia says:

    This is great! How r u doing this with COVID? Go Girl

  9. Diane Rausch says:

    Age is a just a number… we do the best with what we have…We keep moving forward…
    I’m going to stay young as long as I can…I am Blessed… may you know you are too… in whatever stage of life you are in and going through…Woooooooo to Life…Thank YOU JESUS

  10. Susan Anspacher says:

    We have to get over our ageism. Sometimes older folks are their own worst enemy when it comes to this.

    Amy is spot on!

  11. Gisela Bennie says:

    Love it, Amy! Gisela.

  12. Patricia Adams says:

    Love this!

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