I watch my feet and watch my steps. No more casually trotting down the stairs to pick up the mail … or anything. Mostly, it’s a balance problem. Especially going down. I have a tendency to lurch.
I have fallen on steps. I’ve caught myself before hurtling to the bottom, but in my sense memory, I can feel my bones crunching as I hit the ground. Ouch.
Of all the indignities of getting old, my clumsiness and slowness is the most aggravating. I move like a giant sloth in a rain forest. I have to keep track of where my limbs are lest I knock things over, then have to search for them. Getting down on the floor is easy. Getting up requires knowledge of physics and considerable strategic planning. Until I learn how to use reverse gravity, “up” is a challenge.
Some days are better. If I’m on a smooth, flat surface, I can move reasonably well. Not a picture of grace, but I can do it. On uneven ground — a dirt path or a rough sidewalk — it’s not pretty.
It wasn’t that long ago when I could move normally, or mostly normally.I was downright spry back then. Maybe five years ago. It wasn’t that things didn’t hurt, but I could push them out of my mind and move through them. Can’t do that anymore.
So I’m careful. Slow. Watching where I put my feet. Very careful about footwear.
The world is designed for the agile and fleet of foot. I am neither.