I do a lot of talking between my Facebook pages and groups, my blog, and Twitter, but I hardly let on about my very personal issues that I’m going through. This year has been one of reflection, and definitely a solidification of my passion for the health and wellness of others. I have 2 sick grandparents. My granddad has been confined to a bed in a hospital for about 6 months. My grandmother had a couple of health scares, now she has nurses that come to her house to assist. And my boyfriend has lost 2 grandmothers in the past 3 months. So in the past year, we have been confronted with sickness and death and its tolls on the families. These are 4 separate families that are having to deal with similar issues…aging parents and the stress, fear, and financial stress that accompany them.
It is always hard to deal with sickness and death. That is natural. But these strong people are/were 80+ years old, and have lived great and full lives. Yes, it sucks to see them not as vibrant or to watch them transition away, but that is our life cycle. What is NOT natural is watching our society willingly accept sickness (as evidenced by their apathy towards healthy living.)
I have a different eye than most people…a different point of view…since becoming a personal trainer and going through a transition of my own. When I go places, I people watch. I watch how their bodies’ move, their attitudes, watch what/how they eat, how they interact with their kids and others, and many times I get sad. I get sad when I see a teenager with a venti Frappuccino or a parent feeding their kid a huge slice of pizza and pop or a severely obese person with a cinnamon roll and a large sandwich. I see these people eating themselves to terrible health, which leads to a less than stellar quality of life.
Today, the average life expectancy for a man around is 78 and a woman is close to 83. Whereas back in 1980, life expectancy was about 70 for men and 77.5 for women. So yes, we are living longer, but what is the quality of those years? The term morbidity refers to a diseased state or living with some kind of ailment or disability. How many people do you know living with diabetes, arthritis, heart conditions, breathing issues, walking issues, and/or mental issues? Are those people getting better or worse? Do they seem comfortable in their aging and later years? Probably not. I am not a statistician, nor am I a hardcore trend watcher, but just loosely watching the obesity trends tells me that our morbidity and mortality rates will grow, and will hit people younger and younger.
Do you want to be comfortable and enjoy your retirement years? Or do you want to be carted back and forth to the hospital? Do you want your family to be stressed and struggling worrying about your health? These are some very important questions you have to deal with. This is much bigger than wearing skinny jeans and worrying about your vacation photos. This is your life and that of your loved ones. Take heed now, because dealing with this stuff in real life sucks majorly. We can change things though…just start NOW!!