This is what my husband Chuck says his mother would tell him when he went to her bored. I imagine he just wanted someone to play with. He was the oldest child, and children get bored playing by themselves.
Now he realizes, though, that it was good advice to last a lifetime.
My Mama didn’t stop to play with me either. In my home if I said I was bored, she would find something for me to do. And it was usually something I didn’t want to do. I made sure I stayed out of my Mama’s way.
Times were different back then.
But Chuck’s Mama’s way of handling him gave him something that has lasted a lifetime. Now when he gets bored, he says that her words haunt his consciousness; and he can still hear her say, “Go outside and find something to do.” And that is just what he does.
Many retired men go back to work because they get bored. They find they can only play so much golf or hunt so many deer or catch so many fish.
The “Daily Mail News” says that “One in 20 men aged between 50 and 74 has decided to go back to work, according to research presented to the Royal Economic Society’s conference in London.” You can read more here.
Having a sedentary lifestyle is not good for us. Just because we retire doesn’t mean we have to stop and rust. I love the Einstein quote. “Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.” It has more meaning to me now that I’m older.
The research on being sedentary is beginning to mushroom. A sedentary lifestyle leads to all kinds of problems as we age. There seems to be new information almost every day. One example is an article in The Guardian. You can read it here.
According to the World Health Organization, “Sedentary lifestyles increase all causes of mortality, double the risk of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and obesity, and increase the risks of colon cancer, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, lipid disorders, depression and anxiety.” You can read more here.
So it is good to keep moving, especially as we age.
My husband does a good job of “keeping moving”. He no longer runs because of knee problems, but he walks about a mile every other day.
Because he got bored with walking, he now takes a plastic bag and picks up the trash along side a well-traveled road in our neighborhood. The bending is good exercise, too. A win, win.
He’s done this for about three years now. The neighborhood looks so much better. A win, win, win!
I probably should get him a sign to go out there. “This street maintained by Chuck Littlejohn.” He does the same thing down at our Coasthouse, too.
He also keeps the yard picked up of debris from our many thunderstorms. Florida is like that. Not all sunshine down here.
He keeps the pool sparkling and the trash moved out of the house. He putters away and seems to take pride in the aftermath. And all the while, it is good exercise.
When I was young, my Dad used to ask me, “Why do you pay a gym membership and then pay to have the lawn mowed, the house cleaned, and the pool maintained? Wouldn’t you get exercise doing those jobs yourself and save money in the process?” Amazingly, he was right all along.
And he was another example of someone who kept moving. He always appeared younger than his years. One day when he was in his 70s a friend called to tell me that he had stopped to visit with my Dad. He thought it was great that the visit was on top of my family home–on the roof.
Dad had a lawn chair up there so that when he tired of replacing shingles, he could sit down and rest without climbing back down the ladder. He encouraged David to grab a chair and come up and join him. David said that they had about a 20 minute visit up there.
What we didn’t know at the time was that Dad had pancreatic cancer that already affected his lungs. He worked with petroleum desolates long before they began to understand why anyone needed to wear a mask.
The silent disease is why climbing the ladder winded him so, but it didn’t stop him from climbing up there to begin with. He just kept moving. He was such a good role model.
Of course, Chuck doesn’t always go outside. He runs errands downtown or goes fishing.
And sometimes more than not, he stops to tackle the few dishes sitting in the sink. There is always a lot to do around any home, so it isn’t like there is not something always to do. And he never seems to get bored.
I am glad that Chuck had a mother that encouraged him to be industrious. I try not to harp about any of these things–well, except when company is coming. Then my Mama’s voice takes over in my head, because everything had to be just perfect.
But meanwhile I really don’t have to harp. Dody is there in his head saying, “Go outside and find something to do.” 😌. Thank you, Dody! I’m a lucky girl!
What did you parents do when you were bored? What do parents today do?