I'm only 28. I feel old.
1) I can't drink a lot of caffeine anymore. In college, I used to be able to suck down a couple bottles of Coke doing some homework, and still fall right asleep. Shortly after that, I was drinking Diet Cokes all day long, sometimes up to nine or ten a day (soda is free at TCFWIW). But, one night I was sitting on the sofa, watching television with a Diet Coke in hand. My chest started to get tight, my left arm started to tingle, and I got that shortness-of-breath and heart thumping that you get when you get really scared. I thought "Oh boy, these are heart-attack symptoms and I'm only 26." So, I went to the doctor and had a stress test done, as well as lots of other scans. As it turns out, my health is very healthy, even more so than most people my age, and everything else was normal. So, the doctor turned to my diet. As soon as I mentioned the amount of Diet Cokes in a typical day, he stopped me and stated that was my problem. So, I dumped caffeine almost entirely, cold turkey. Those first two weeks were the most painful I've ever experienced. Relentless terrible headaches, sleepless nights, and general crankiness were par for the course. But, caffeine is gone and I'm likely healthier for it. I still miss that sexy silver can, though.
2) I play "mystery bruise" in the shower. When I was younger, it seemed like I could practically whack myself with hammer and show no marks. What daily injuries I incurred seemed to heal before my very eyes. Now though, I get bruises that I have no idea where they even came from. Did I run into a table? Did I bang my arm on something? Who knows for sure, but it seems like I get bruises for no good reason now. When did I become so fragile?
3) I went from an iron stomach to one of paper. In my younger days, I could eat two dozen super-hot buffalo wings, some chili, and some warm Dr. Pepper in one sitting and feel like I could run a marathon. Now, my stomach moans and groans just at the thought of a greasy pizza or Chinese food. What the heck happened?
4) I take vitamins. When I don't take vitamins, I'm sluggish, cranky, and achy. If I miss my gingko biloba, I'm stuck with a dull headache all day. Am I really this close to a shoebox-sized box of pills with the days of the week on it?
Like I said, reality smacks me around on a pretty regular basis, but Mother Nature has been more than happy to throw some extra jabs and uppercuts my way over the last couple of years. With my birthday coming up shortly, it sure seems like she's not holding back now.
If anybody finds a fountain of youth, let me know, okay?