Thursday, 7 March 2013


We are well into the year 2013 but already I dare to suggest that like me you have forgotten about any new year’s resolution you might have made.
Mine is always the same, to take better care of myself and to lose weight, simple!
This year I seem to be maintaining my plan and have joined a slimming group, however there is something resolute about knowing that it’s for my health.
Someone made a resolution to be a more caring person, do good deeds more frequently. Another person indicated they would become more patient and less irritable. That should be me, according to my hubby who laughs at my impatience.
Impatience is more to do with spontaneity of the mouth, which has not always linked into the brain at the time, well that is his theory.
However as I get older, I see that being critical of others is like being critical of oneself as in truth we are all cut from the same cloth. Each of us has our own personal struggle to contend with. Life can be hard in all kinds of ways even for those of us are fortunate enough to now live in modern British society.
Television can bring home what it was like in the ‘old’ days and fifties and sixties for example Call the Midwife drags those of us who lived through those times to replay history. Playing out as a child could mean skipping amongst the scattered bricks of derelict buildings and using air raid shelters as gang huts to play in.
We can appreciate the wide variety of foods, the central heating and the television which drags us from our comfort zone to witness other lives both home and abroad first hand.
However I digress from the subject of resolutions for a New Year and why many of us forget in the blink of an eye what we considered important when we made them.
My dieting promise is made flippantly and almost routinely. Even I don’t have confidence in the idea so why would my cravings cease. Something bigger has to change in me in order to maintain the idea of losing weight. I have to really want too. It has to mean something to me for example I have to want to be healthy, I need to feel being healthy really matters, not to the doctors, not to the family either but to the very heart of me and so often that resolution, whatever it was at the time did not mean anything.
Perhaps it takes a shock or a shake up to unsteady the mirage we live in.
Too often we toddle along thinking that bad things just aren’t going to happen to us only to other people. ‘It’ll never happen to me’. I used to imagine that if I kept thinking about something happening it just wouldn’t happen. Da! That was my philosophy which of course sounds eternally pessimistic, always being prepared for the worst in the hope it will not happen. Got it? Isn’t that what pessimism is? Whereas, optimism means, always seeing the good side to everything and not expecting bad things to happen so one is taken by surprise when it does.
Health is the one that always gets us. We can be going along nicely when we are suddenly struck down by something awful on a scale of 0 to 10. Acute conditions we can recover quite quickly from, for example an operation or some type of condition we know we will be over in a matter days or weeks. Chronic conditions well, that’s different, it will affect your life and your interactivity with others how you feel on the day has to be considered on a daily basis. Will I be fit enough to make this or that arrangement? Chronic health conditions saps confidence and ones sense of permanence and wellbeing.
Rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis of the neck and back the list is endless, heart, liver and kidney conditions and so on.
In my youth I wandered through life confident in my general health, but as I began to age I gradually become aware of how precarious health and indeed life is. Now spending more days doing sedentary occupations, like writing, painting and surfing the net. Also lots more out to lunch dates with my beloved or my friends.
Not worrying too much about gaining weight, being less active in simple things like driving or being driven everywhere. For me eating healthily does figure but that means eating plenty of fresh fruit and veg.
The odd biscuit and slice of cake, the lunch time sandwich and chips are part of retirement aren’t they? Keeping active like going to various classes, reading groups, writing and painting classes and regular walks with my dog should be doing the trick shouldn’t it? Maybe not! Health issues have been slipping confidently somewhere into the recesses of my mind, however this last couple of years things have changed. Perhaps because my mother and her mother before her lived until they were in the mid-nineties I have become over confident at the length of life. However length is not important, excuse the pun, it is the quality that counts.
Like most of us, as I am pushing towards 70, my health has not been as it should be, thankfully, nothing life threatening but enough to make me sit up and think.
In one of my articles I discussed the way the scientific and medical profession are looking for ways to keep us going, where once a heart problem would mean pretty much the end and rheumatoid arthritis, well just grin and bear it but now there are all kinds of medications and treatments, therefore age related health conditions are no longer just something to ‘get on with’ they are, in the main, treatable conditions so, what can each of us do to help whilst staying within our capabilities?
I know that more than anything I want to feel healthy and whole again, that doesn’t mean being young it means be a healthy aging person. My resolution albeit late is to stay with the thought of really wanting to be well and healthy, and fight my compulsion to go against myself on this idea.

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