Monday, November 14, 2011

(AF) Wandering Post

CAUTION: this post may wander around a bit.
 I promise, I will get back to some happy, more cheerful posts shortly. But tonight, I must take opportunity to write this post, because I feel that it is important. 

Today I had the honor of being nominated to take an elderly relative on a looooonnnng drive to her best friend's, son's funeral. I had so much urgent work to get done here today, including pears that are ripening faster than I can get them worked and a bushel of fresh greens to be worked up and frozen, which I had set aside the entire day to work on, but I ended up being the last possible choice, and her friend desperately needed her support, so off we went. There was actually one other person that could have easily made the trip, and had the entire day free, but his excuse, "Sorry, I have to go hunting."

Emotionally, it was extremely hard going to a funeral, even though I didn't know the person deceased (I do know his mother well.)  I really stressed out for the past few days, knowing I was going to have to go. I love Dave dearly, and wouldn't trade him for anything, but you see, it was the beginning of this past summer that I lost my last boyfriend to our historically, record breaking heat. And just the thought of going to a funeral made too many memories and emotions come flooding back.

It was a tough day, but a day well worth experiencing. For anonymity purposes, we will call the deceased and his mom Max and Judy, and my elderly relative, Liz. When we arrived, the indescribable look on Judy's face, that we had made it, made it all worth letting my chores go for the day. She wrapped her arms around the both of us, hugged us tightly, then collapsed as she let her emotions go in the embrace of her best friend. I grabbed and caught her to keep her from hitting the floor, and held on tight until someone could come help us. Judy had desperately needed her friend, and I was so glad I swallowed my own tearful emotions, let my chores go, and drove Liz there.

So, where am I going with this, you might wonder. Well, Max's death was a big shock to many. At the age of only 61 he had died in his sleep. He just laid down, went to sleep, and never woke up. In my book, 61 is pretty darned young! And setting aside the priceless value of getting two best friend's together in a great time of need, one thing that was said in the eulogy made it all worth the trip for me. The person speaking discussed how Max had been a big, fast-paced business man. He was the Suit & Tie kind of person that lived the high speed, high dollar, fancy, multi-big-business owning lifestyle. And as it started to all catch up with him, he decided to trade it all in for a much more simple, healthier lifestyle, jeans and t-shirt included. He had tried to reverse the damages to his body, slow down and get healthy, but, as the speaker put it, our bodies are delicate and it was all too late for his. He couldn't make changes fast enough to get his body back into good health, and his body just plain quit working. Her words gave me a lot to think about, and today, increased my drive and determination even more, to live a much more healthy and simpler life.

Over the years I always thought I lived reasonably healthy, but admit I have lived a very fast-paced, extremely high-stress life, and, as I looked much closer at my diet, I saw that it wasn't so healthy after all. All of it combined has taken it's toll on my body. I have had heart attacks, arthritis in most of my body and numerous other ills and troubles over the years. Some days I get around pretty decently, then some days it is extremely difficult to simply just turn over in bed, much less try and get out of it. But get out of it I do, move around slowly until the joints get going, and go through my day as fast as my body allows, because when you stop, you stop for good. My doctor has classified me as 'disabled' and insists I never work again. And getting hired by anyone is near impossible because I would be such a liability, but I consider myself to still have skills and abilities so I work for myself, and will continue to do so for as long as humanly possible. The doctor, and a few other 'officials' constantly INSIST that I file for disability, but I am just not ready to do that, yet, as I consider myself to still have marketable abilities (I just need a marketable economy).

Okay, I am wandering again.....  After having lost so many loved ones to death over the past year, most deaths that I considered to have been completely avoidable, it got me to thinking much more seriously about improving my own health, taking a closer look at my diet and lifestyle.  As I held the magnifying glass to the foods I eat and beverages I drink, I was horrified at what I have been putting into my body. I can't believe I am still walking at all. So, my journey to a healthier, more natural and chemical free diet began. It is a long process, as your body gets use to (addicted to) all those food chemicals, but the more I eliminate, and the more natural I eat, the better I am feeling and the more energy I have. And at the same time, I decided to adamantly begin the process of simplifying my life to rid myself of much of the extreme stress I have been living under most of my life. And yes, for the most part, I, too, traded in my fancy dress clothes for old jeans, second hand t-shirts, and flannel over-shirts, which I find very comfortable and liberating! I truly hope it isn't too late for me. I am feeling so much better, so much stronger and much more energetic. But our bodies and systems are much more fragile and delicate than most of us realize, and the chemicals we load them down with, WILL eventually catch up and take them from us, leaving behind grieving loved ones.

So take care of your bodies, read those labels, toss out the stuff loaded with chemicals, get up away from that TV, get outside, plant a garden, and reap its benefits of fresh air, exercise and wonderful, chemical free veggies. You will feel better, more energetic and happier. And most of all, you are worth it!

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