I was visiting with the oldest daughter the other day, in fact I visit with her often as she calls her dad daily, when she began telling me about another party and their ailments. She indicated that their complaining was becoming a little bit annoying and she just wanted to do what I had always done and tell them to, “Just walk it off.”
I was taken back a little bit and she reminded me that when she and her siblings were growing up on the farm, occasionally someone would get injured. The injury would initiate a search for the nearest parent and if that happened to be me the following advice would be given: “Is it broke or are you bleeding?” If the answer was no, then I would respond, “Well, just walk it off.” In the event of a break or blood, they knew where the splints and band-aids were. If one wasn’t enough, use two!
A couple of weeks ago I was in a conversation with Jeff Higgins. He made a statement regarding the fact that as men age, their hormone balance changes, and their body begins to produce more estrogen and less testosterone. I know that my testosterone level is low because after the cancer incident in 2009, the doctors have kept it at a low level. It seems that the type of cancer that I had actually feeds off of the male hormone. In addition, if my estrogen production has increased that would explain my new ability to cry at will. When I was younger, I had to pluck a nose hair in order to bring the tears. Chicks thought I was sensitive; therefore, it was a handy talent to have.
However, if this is what women are going through on a regular basis, it explains a lot! Now before you take this the wrong way, I’m not making any misogynistic statements here, I’m just saying that if this is the reality of the opposite gender, then it is an entirely new viewpoint for me and I’m not real comfortable with it. I have never thought that I could endure pregnancy or childbirth either, but this takes everyday life to an entirely new level. I can now understand the irony of the following: Men say they wish women came with instructions. What’s the point? Have you ever seen a man read the instructions?
I liked the old me, but the new me is not the destination that I was aiming for. I really wanted to depart this world like my great-uncle Tobias, peaceful and asleep. Not like the rest of the people in the car screaming and yelling for him to get his hands back on the wheel! With this sudden heightened level of emotions, I probably fall into the more vocal group.
As this new condition tries to achieve a balance, I am undoubtedly forced to take my own advice as given to many in the past. Let’s see if this works as I try to just walk it off!
-Paul Richardson is the proprietor of In Sane Marketing Solutions. He writes a weekly column, The Horse I Rode In On, for The Neosho Daily News and The Aurora Advertiser.