You ask about things we encountered that we didn't expect. I didn't expect to fall apart physically once I hit retirement, that's for damn sure! I took excellent care of my health all my life: exercise, healthy food, no smoking or drinking, and relatively good genes inherited, so why not plan to work at my beloved career well into my 70's? Surprise, surprise! Along comes breast cancer, arthritis, osteoporosis, and out the window goes the bicycle riding, swimming and weight training. Along comes pharmaceutical expenses, surgeries, regular dr. visits, food supplements in addition to the lifelong vitamins and minerals used regularly to safeguard against these very kinds of problems. Out go the restaurant dinners, new clothes, periodicals, movies,gifts for others, trips to visit family, and every other possible luxury that can be seen as expendable in order to stay in the black. Then the market drops, and there go the savings. Out go the plans for redecorating the old apartment.Than God for the darling birdies that keep one sane under adversity and allow one to laugh while one's world goes to hell in a handbasket, one's children lose their jobs, become alcoholic, or work so hard they have no time for visits to Mom. One has pets, gives them love, receives love in return, is careful of their health so as not to engender veterinarian bills on top of everything else, and then here come the cataracts and macular degeneration. Who ever could have foreseen these health problems when one was pre-warned and lived a healthy life to enable one to avoid those very problems with which one is saddled? Why would one expect such things?And yet, there it is: a life totally different than that which was planned.I say all this as a warning to youngsters. One must safeguard one's health, and at the same time, prepare for the worst. Set aside whatever is possible in the event of unforeseen illness, no matter how much you are determined not to be a pill-popping senior! And if you are a smoker or a meat-eater, or don't exercise regularly,you will need that money for certain. As the saying goes, Prepare for the worst, and hope for the best. Good luck to you in finding a suitable healthy pet, too!
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