I think of myself as being healthy, I am diffidently not sick. I don’t drink or smoke I am told to lose weight, drink more water, exercise but like I said I am not sick.

The question remains am I healthy? Is being healthy not being sick.

Let me reminisce for an instant. My father was a healthy man. Worked hard all his life, never went to extremes, he smoked and had the social drink. Our meals where always cooked by mom and they were fairly well balanced. A restaurant meal was a special occasion and were few and far between. Dad worked in carpentry in his spare time and mom, I believe, sometimes worked harder than he did.  As for me, if not in school, I was outside, in the playgrounds playing baseball or what ever game came up at the time.  Life was great and everybody was healthy, we were not sick.

At 62 dad had chest pains, it was diagnosed as angina and it was controlled with the occasional nitro pill. Thanks to mom she ensured he kept a proper diet as describe by the nutritionist. At this stage of my life I was on my own, married with children,but mom ruled the house.

My mom passed away at 66, it was a long illness that took a toll on everybody. In his grief he started to drink more and with this, his smoking increased.  His diet consisted more on take out and a lot of process food when he did cook at home.  He gained weight and by now his blood pressure was high and again controlled by pills. He did join a bowling league and did so a few times a week but then it was an occasion to have a drink with friends. Chest pains were more frequent at this time and we all anticipating a coming heart attack. He was not sick.

He did not suffer a heart attack but a massive stroke.  I was told to bring his medication in, I filled a 4qt basket with pill bottles, pain pills, nitro pills, blood pressure pills, some I was uncertain what they were.  Completely paralyzed on the left side he lost his speech and he never recovered from those symptoms.  Unable to care for him at home he was admitted to a long-term health facility. 

Prisoner of a wheelchair, he was taken off all the pills except one for digestive purpose. He never smoked or had a drink again, not that he was forbidden but he choose not to. In his wheelchair he did get around and being a very sociable person, he knew many in the residence and many who came to visit them. He could not speak but he listened and enjoyed the one sided conversations. Dependent on others for everything, this proud man was now sick.

He survived for a number of years and always had a smile. I realized that he became healthy after his stoke, being healthy does not mean not being sick but living a balance lifestyle.  Taking everything in moderation and including all the elements that life has to offer, nutrition, water, exercise, fresh air, rest and faith that we are not alone and there is purpose to our life.     

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