The Manhattan Project--2016 A to Z Theme

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...

Friday, September 2, 2011

Too Young to Be That Old

          In my previous post, Doris Plaster talked about the 50 word stories that were her submissions to the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge.  I decided to try my hand at one of these.  My story comes in at 80 words.  Not bad for wordy me--it's not all that easy to do.

Too Young To Be That Old


          When I went to visit my friend Steve, I was greeted by a line of elderly people in wheelchairs watching to see who was getting a visitor.  It was sad to see.  Sadder still was that Steve at only age 57 was confined to a bed, nearly blind, having lost both legs to diabetes.  I didn't recognize him.  He looked as old as the people who had greeted me.   Saddest of all was that the following year Steve was dead.


         On September 12th my special guest will be Damyanti from Daily (w)rite.   Like Doris, Damyanti compiled her A to Z stories into a book which is now available.  Please be sure to check out my guest post on Damyanti's blog.


...

50 comments:

  1. what a sad story :(( So many people die from diabetes, it's possible it is even more dangerous than cancer and similar illnesses

    ReplyDelete
  2. That is really sad, Lee. And for so many, it's a preventable disease.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Wow, that is sad. I do know that elderly greeting though and have to face it weekly.
    Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

    ReplyDelete
  4. Lee,
    Thank you for sharing a story that must have been very difficult to write...
    Take care,
    Lisa

    ReplyDelete
  5. Dezmond -- As one who has been diagnosed as diabetes I'm thankful that I'm diagnosed and treated. I use drugs to treat it--my dietary habits are abysmal.

    Alex -- As for me I know I should have exercised more in my life. I find sticking to a good diet and eating right is my biggest challenge.

    Suze -- I was also stunned in my last visits to Steve.

    Jules -- Nursing homes can be somewhat depressing. I would hate to feel that lonely.

    Lisa FF -- I'm glad that I visited Steve when I did. He was never one of my best friends, but I saw how appreciative he was when I visited him. He was receiving very few visitors.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  6. Donna -- Thank you for the kind words and the visit.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  7. Yes he was indeed too young. When I hear about people like him then I feel so embarressed that I complain about my type two diabetese.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Sorry about your friend, brother. Nice try at 50 words!

    ReplyDelete
  9. It's sad but a true fact that diabetes in rare circumstances can lead to an early death.
    Well done on the 80 word post.

    Yvonne.

    ReplyDelete
  10. The saddest thing I ever heard was said by my sweet mum-in-law about a month before she died:

    "In here [nursing home], when someone dies, everyone cries. They cry because it isn't them."

    ReplyDelete
  11. Arlee, I don't think we know just how much of a story we can squeeze into a few words until we try. Checked out your interview!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Munir -- I'm not sure what type of diabetes Steve had, but I do know that he led a life of self abuse and neglect so he was much to blame for his circumstance. But it is still sad.

    Gregg-- It's always said to hear a story like this.

    Yvonne-- Thanks. If it isn't kept in check diabetes can lead to all sorts of complications including early death.

    LD -- A chill passed through me when I read your comment. It's really a sad statement on the forgotten elderly.

    Joy -- I'm not used to being so frugal with my words but I guess one would get better with practice.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  13. Hi Lee .. pretty good at succinctness .. yes diabetes is extremely debilitating - and we don't know who's next .. also people age so differently - even if they're ill.

    Really sorry to read about Steve .. and his family .. Good challenge for you - Doris is the Mistress of this art.

    Cheers Hilary

    ReplyDelete
  14. So sad. :-(

    My youth group decided that we'd go visit our town's home for the elderly, just because of the people you mentioned, always waiting in line, but never getting visitors.

    ReplyDelete
  15. "Dezmond -- As one who has been diagnosed as diabetes I'm thankful that I'm diagnosed and treated. I use drugs to treat it--my dietary habits are abysmal."

    sorry to hear that, Lee. My father has it also, and my grandfather had it too. It is one of the most common illnesses here in Vojvodina, since people like to eat bad food and it has become both a genetic and a lifestyle disease :( As you said, the good thing is that it can be tamed down with proper diet and medications.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Such a touching story. It brought tears as I know young people like that.

    ReplyDelete
  17. A tragic sort of story, to which too many of us, I think, can relate....
    And great title.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Hilary -- Doris does a great job of keeping the story at 50 words. I tried.

    Misha -- I think it's great what you and your group did. The young need to do things like this more often just to know what could one day be in store for them. All of us who survive youth will eventually be old.

    Dezmond -- You hit it right when you called diabetes a "lifestyle disease". It's one of the fastest growing health problems.

    Mary -- I'm sure there are many young people like that. I don't know what was more heartbreaking though: my friend confined to his bed or all of the lonely old people waiting for someone, anyone to visit them.

    Andrew -- Too bad we're mostly too busy to take the time to visit those lonely people. I know I'm guilty.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  19. Such a sad story! Amazing that you were able to convey the emotion in only 80 words! I am someone who writes far too much to say nothing at all I could learn a thing or two from you!

    ReplyDelete
  20. Fifty word stories remind me of Hemingway's six word story challenge. All are good tools for practicing word economy.

    Have a great weekend!

    ReplyDelete
  21. Hi, Lee! Just dropping by to say Hi! Hard to believe a year has passed!

    I have two sisters and two nieces who are diabetic. They've always been toothpick thin. All got the disease when pregnant with first-borns. Docs thought the disease would go away, but it didn't. You've written so elegantly. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  22. That's an awesome concept and your story is powerful. Wow, two A to Z-ers have published their stuff? That's amazing!

    ReplyDelete
  23. Your story is great. You should try Drabbles. They are 100 word stories and are really fun exercises.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Heart breaking and happens too often: diabetes. Excellent post, Arlee.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Shae -- I too tend to be wordy--and I do like that--but I thought I'd experiment with this. The writers like Doris Plaster really have mastered this.

    Karen -- The short shorts are good exercises to learn to be more concise.

    Kittie -- Most of the diabetics I've known have tended to be overweight. In the diabetes class I took they said the diabetic never really goes away but can get controlled. Thank you for the compliment.

    Donna -- My 80 words don't even begin to convey all of the other sad parts about this story.

    Scarlett -- I'm so thrilled about the achievements of Doris and Damyanti.

    Marjorie -- I've been wondering where you've been. I've seen some of the drabbles and have been very impressed.

    Susan -- Heartbreaking indeed. Thanks for stopping by.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  26. You're breaking my heart Arlee! Great mini story. Those are so hard for me. I guess I am a wordy writer too.

    ReplyDelete
  27. What a sad story. And the fact that you conveyed all of that in just 80 words is pretty amazing. Very well done. I hope Steve's family are doing well.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Hard-hitting, especially since Steve is so young.

    I'm visiting as a fellow campaigner. What an interesting blog! Great to "meet" you.

    Nadine Galinsky Feldman

    ReplyDelete
  29. Hi-ya. Nice to meet you. I wandered over here from Karen's BBQ. (I brought steamed crabs and a chocolate rum cake.)

    I didn't participate last year, because I was brand new to blogging, but hope to jump into your A-Z challenge next year. I met a lot of really cool people last year by following some of those blogs. (Egads, I hope the rules don't limit us to 50 words, because I do tend to rattle on!)

    So sorry about your friend.

    ReplyDelete
  30. I have heard these kinds of stories so often, usually it is men who don't manage their diabetes and die young. My husband's brother was one, passing away in his 50's.

    ReplyDelete
  31. boy, life sure can suck sometimes!

    i am from your memoir writing group. stopping by to say a first hello and let you know i am now following you in google reader. I have been writing for about 10 months (just on my blog) and adore it! i am so surprised to have found an unexpected new hobby. professionally i am a visual artist but have always used text as inspiration. i am so excited to meet all you campaigners and get to know you and your writing.do stop by the flight platform as well. janexxxx

    ReplyDelete
  32. Hi Arlee, I am so incredibly sorry to hear of Steve's suffering and of the loss of your friend.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Deana -- I tend to be a fan of wordiness within reason.

    Carol -- This isn't the entire story by any means.

    Doralynn -- Thanks. Another sad part of the story is that Steve had no immediate family and few friends who took the time to see him.

    Nadine -- Thank you for visiting and hope to see more of you.

    Susan -- In A to Z you make your own rules about posting. I don't think I ever posted less than 100 words and usually more than 500.

    KarenG-- I'm not sure what it is about men, but we don't like to be told what to do I guess, especially when it comes to eating.

    Jane -- Good to meet you. I usually post memoir related things on Fridays so you picked a good day to stop by.

    Christy -- The physical suffering may have been small compared to some of the other suffering he had to deal with. There is so much more to this story than can be simply conveyed in a few words.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  34. Lee, I have to say your "try" turned out to be pretty damn good. Lot of emotion in a few words. Very nice.

    ReplyDelete
  35. It was very sad but it was very kind of you to visit. Your 80 words post moved me.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Yeah, reminds me of a woman I got to know at a seniors home. She had Alzheimer's and heart breaking to watch her mental health disappear over a series of months.

    ReplyDelete
  37. followed u over from karen's bbq... brought whiskey and steak! enjoy! and great blog--following!

    ReplyDelete
  38. Chuck -- Thank you!

    Oceangirl -- I hadn't seen Steve in a long time and when I heard about his circumstance I felt like it was the right thing to do.

    DWei -- It is sad to see the deterioration of another person.

    Jeremy - Thanks for stopping by today.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  39. Sorry about your friend. A limit of fifty words, sure doesn't allow you to mince any of them.

    ReplyDelete
  40. I love microfiction. You might check out "blink-ink" magazine. They do 50 word stories and Jason Evan's Clarity of Night contest which is 250 words. Both very cool.

    I wandered over from Karen's BBQ. Nice to meet you!

    ReplyDelete
  41. Hi Lee ~ looking forward to the 1st Campaign Challenge tomorrow !

    ReplyDelete
  42. 80 words yet it does more than a 400 page Stephen King novel. Great stuff.

    ReplyDelete
  43. Very sad; I'm type 1; I know the struggle~ It is a terribly difficult disease. I'm sorry for your loss~

    ReplyDelete
  44. Pat -- 80 words was tough enough. I have to admire anyone who can tell a story in 50 words or less.

    Wendy -- Good to meet you as well. I'll be by to visit you.

    Mish -- I'm dragging today and haven't checked out the first challenge.

    Damon -- Thanks for stopping by.

    Maurice -- Thanks, but I really need a lot more words to tell the entire story.

    Ella -- Diabetes can present such serious problems. I'm type 2 and I hope I can keep it in check.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  45. A sad, but short and powerful story. I'm sorry about your friend Lee.

    ReplyDelete

Go ahead and say something. Don't be afraid to speak your mind.
I normally try to respond to all comments in the comment section so please remember to check the "Email follow-up comments" box if you want to participate in the comment conversation.

For Battle of the Bands voting the "Anonymous" commenting option has been made available though this version is the least preferred. If voting using "anonymous" please include in your comment your name (first only is okay) and city you are voting from and the reason you chose the artist you did.

If you know me and want to comment but don't want to do it here, then you can send me an email @ jacksonlee51 at aol dot com.

Lee