Monday, July 9, 2007

It's a Numbers Game

I have been thinking over the past few days, weeks, whatever, about my grandfather. He died in January of 2002, at 78 years old. He died of a diabetes-related illness that could have been prevented if he had stayed on some sort of diet and exercised, even a little bit. My father and uncle also have diabetes--they have two brothers and two sisters who have so far escaped it. (I wonder how long it will stay that way.)

Anyway, my father is 48 and my uncle is 58. This makes me wonder--does that mean that my uncle has 20 years to live? And my dad only has 30? Does this mean that I am probably looking at 50-some years? It sounds like a lot--20, 30, 50 years. But when you consider that we could have at least another 10 years on top of that, and probably better quality of life in between, shouldn't that be something to strive for? Health and wellbeing and happiness and all that? My grandfather was chairbound for probably the last ten years of his life. I can only vaguely remember a time when he could walk easily, drive a car, etc. What sort of life is that?

I get these forwarded emails from my mom that say things like "Eat well, exercise, die anyway." If only it were that simple. It would be nice to have that black and white choice: I can eat well and exercise, or I can not, and the consequences would be the same. Ultimately I suppose they are, but the years before the final "consequence" will surely be as different as night and day.

Another thing that I have been thinking--I really want to lose weight. Really really. But somehow I let the stupidest things get in my way--Taco Bell, for one. Chocolate, for another. How is it that I could value a taco or a candy bar over the thing that I have wanted for over a decade?

1 comment:

kathyj333 said...

I think that in the end we will all die no matter what we do. But we can make our lives much better up to the point where we do die. We can exercise and be able to get around better. We can eat good food and feel better. I guess it all adds up to what you want to get out of life.