In early December, husband Paul and I went on one of those nowadays rare grown-up dinners. The occasion was special. His son/my stepson and his wife were visiting as they have been for the last six months, and it happened to be son’s birthday.
We chose to have an early dinner at the Seven Brothers restaurant in the 7 Cedars Casino to celebrate. We chose it because we wanted to gift our family by delivering them into the wonder of the holiday decorations that greeted us when we left the casino.
Jamestown S’Klallam tribe lights up our community with wondrous lights on trees, bushes, poles, buildings and any other available structure within their lands and businesses.
From the casino, we drove east to the Community Center and tribal headquarters equally festooned for the holidays. We traveled back and took River Road exit and made our way to the Healing Center, the newest addition to the holiday of lights. We stopped and gazed trying to take the beauty of it all in.
We ended by going by Jamestown Family Health Center appearing like a floating mirage of lights in the dark. The tribe gifts our community every year with the best festival of lights that is truly beyond a grateful community’s expectations.
Who invited the Grinch to our holidays! Alas, I cannot let my musings dismiss significant happenings even though the change of pace may seem mean. Before I comment, my public health background compels me to issue a disclaimer that reads:
Wearing a mask can protect you from exposure to COVID, flu, RSV, and the common cold. Precautions should include washing your hands frequently and not touching your mouth, nose, and eyes until you have washed your hands.
But really, it is tiresome to be back in the environment of wondering if we will catch a bug by going to a gathering, any gathering. Makes me grumpy.
Not surprisingly, I wear a mask to protect myself and Paul to the fullest extent possible.
These bugs are hard on old bodies. We are more careful when my husband leaves our home. Frankly, his ears have a lot to do with having to support oxygen tubes, hearing aids and glasses. A mask may just tip the balance, and everything will fall off.
Let’s talk about sex
Hope another change of pace is not causing readers’ whiplash, but I thought this would be fun to share. The Dungeness Valley Health and Wellness Clinic provides health care to people without a primary care provider and/or sufficient insurance or funds to receive care. See their website (sequimfreeclinic.org) for more information.
The clinic also has a wellness program which includes a monthly radio program called WOW (Working on Wellness) which features a topic on health. The December KSQM program hosted by Olive Martini featured Dr. Paul Cunningham, geriatrician and Chief Medical Officer of Jamestown Family Health Clinic.
The topic for Dr. Paul (as he is called on the broadcast) was “Aging and Sexuality.” The program was aptly titled, “Let’s talk about sex.”
When Dr. Paul told me his plan, I asked if I could join, which he thought a good idea. So did Pennie Robinson, who coordinates the program on behalf of the clinic.
Dr. Paul is well-versed in topics of aging and able to articulate in ways that most of us understand and apply to our lives. I am an author who advocates for healthy aging and clearing away misconceptions that can lead to unnecessary self-imposed limitations. I am also an old woman.
Sexual intimacy is one of those areas in which accurate information and discussion will improve our understanding and making choices reflective of our wishes and, if in a relationship, our partners.
I understand KSQM posts the programs as a podcast so if the topic interests you, check it out. You might also want to check out “Women, We’re Only Old Once” in which