For a woman over 50 who went out of her way to damage her body, I’m in pretty good shape!

By “pretty good shape” – I mean good health. I’m not 16 any more, but for many reasons, that’s a good thing. My constitution and immune system are exceedingly strong and healthy. Most previous generations of my family lived well into their nineties then died lovely, peaceful, deaths. With a few notable exceptions…

Having binged and starved my body since – well, my mother started restricting my intake when I was three weeks old because I was fat, so I don’t know when “I” began restricting and/or binging, but my body never had normal sustenance – so let’s just say “forever”. Having binged and starved forever, I’m still protected from illnesses year in, year out (ironically I’m very ill for the first time in years at the moment), never broken a bone, or had dental issues. I’m tempting fate here – won’t go on any more just in case, but you get the picture.

I abused my body through diet, too much/little exercise, purging, inclination to over-medicate (my psychologist calls it “overdose”), the physical demands of being a musician for 36 years (if you’re not a musician, you have no idea!)

All in all, the few complaints I have are fairly trivial.

I had an asthma attack when I was eight. Some issues in my 20s. Then a horrid attack about 15 years ago and it’s deteriorated since then. Not serious, but I should probably tick the box on the anaesthetist’s form the next time I require surgery.

I get migraines. Nowhere near as frequently as I used to. But I’ve been cursed with them my adult entire life. They were mostly hormonal. Same for my mother and great grandmother. I still get some – even though I’m 14 years post-hysterectomy. I think there are multiple causes, but I have good medication and they are, for the most part, well controlled.

I have restless legs syndrome. Do not roll your eyes at me. It – is – hideous. I have great drugs now, but before I got them, I was awake for two years. Literally. I couldn’t sleep more than 20 minutes at a time and was managing that once or twice most days. For two years. Fuck me. I was almost psychotic. Then the Australian Government approved new drugs and my life changed. I’m still learning about it and having pharmaceutical interactions, but for the most part, it’s well controlled. When it isn’t well controlled? I want to die. Right there and then. It’s not just the restlessness, but the chronic nerve pain running down my legs.

The only other thing “wrong” with me is hypermobility. I suspect if I hadn’t been plump and lazy most of my life I’d have more strength and fewer issues now, but hypermobility is not a cool party trick or handy tool in your sexual kitbag. It means (for me) the wrong muscles doing the work of the other muscles (I think). So I have chronic neck, shoulder and back pain. I’ve had a couple of cortisone injections into my lower back (have a lot of arthritis (bone spurs – same thing? I should google…) which is a result of playing the flute from such a young age, and not caring for my body until such an old age.

This was meant to be a single paragraph to prelude the fact I’ll have a handful of posts about physical health which is blessedly good most of the time. If I’m complaining, it’s because I’ve forgotten my medication, or a migraine has blown out of control. Rare events.