Saturday, February 16, 2008

Talking ‘bout my generation

I’m genuinely not trying to appear all cool and nihilistic when I say this, but I’ve always been a bit of a sucker for that whole ‘hope I die before I get old’ schtick. I am painfully aware that as a 35-year-old taxpaying individual, I should really have grown out of the ‘live fast, die young’ thing by now, but when you compare the contemptuous stance of My Generation to something like the desperately needy When I’m 64, there’s no competition, is there? Surely any right-minded, red-blooded male would rather be in Daltrey’s gang, than McCartney’s? Anyway, that’s what I thought until ulcerative colitis entered my life. But since my diagnosis, my thoughts have, in a worryingly McCartney-esque fashion, turned to the future. What will my life be like when I'm 64? An OAP with UC. Never mind ‘we can rent a cottage on the Isle of White, if it’s not too dear.’ I want to know if all I’ve got to look forward to is a retirement spent on the karsie? In my old age I want to be able to bounce my grandchildren on my knee – but not whilst I’m on the toilet. That’s just wrong. What are the implications of growing old with ulcerative colitis though? It seems to me that it can only make matters worse. Whatever ailments old age throws at us it’s always going to be a case of ‘…and ulcerative colitis’. Arthritis and ulcerative colitis. High blood pressure and ulcerative colitis. Dementia and ulcerative colitis. Sense of humour failure and ulcerative colitis. Our copybook is already marked. Christ knows how many pills I’ll be popping as a pensioner. Not for me the Werther’s Originals, I’ll be necking drugs by the arthritic handful. Only time will tell, I suppose. In the meantime it’s probably wise to try and stay as fit and healthy as possible. It may not be very rock and roll, but it might just mean I don’t die before I get old.