Monday, May 16, 2011

Choose You. A lesson from my dad.

In April last year, I wrote a blog about how my dad surprised me. I mean, SUPER CRAZY SURPRISED me. After 45 years of dedicating his life and his lungs to smoking, he quit cold turkey. We still don't know exactly what made the switch flip but we aren't complaining one bit. And I could not be more impressed.

I always believed that my dad could do it. He is a no bullshit kind of guy so if he decided he was going to do something, he would do it. The problem was that he didn't decide to do it and that fact frustrated me beyond belief. I gave him a hard time about his smoking for a solid 20 years. It wasn't until about 8 years ago that I gave up trying. It was a combo of not wanting to waste my breath and not wanting to think about it anymore….it was a bit heartbreaking to tell you the truth.

But now, it is time to celebrate. My dad has been a non-smoker for a whole year! A WHOLE YEAR! I don't hear his cough anymore….used to be able to track him down instantly by following the sound of his cough. He gets a physical every year without being reminded and just started working out with a trainer. He looks amazing….just turned 70! And, damn it, he took his health into his own hands! He Chose Him!

Choose You is a campaign by the American Cancer Society for the month of May. We all need to take our health seriously and get ourselves checked out. My dad's story should inspire people to take 30 seconds, call your doctor and get yourself a physical! Why wait another year. We can tell you to do it 1,000 times but at some point we will get frustrated and give up! Do it for yourself.

I speak from experience beyond my dad. My husband is a healthy 38 year old, 3-time Olympian. I believe he is healthy he believes he is healthy but let's be honest, we all get older. I like to believe we get better with age, like fine wine, but even fine wine has it's prime and is much better when it is given a little TLC. My husband is incapable of making appointments for his health. He admits this, with a chuckle, and doesn't know why. He can make appointments to play golf, for business meetings, to coach Skye's soccer team but he can't make an appointment to get his teeth cleaned. Busy, busy, busy.

Flossing, stretching, making Dr. appointments….all things we should do and they all take less than 5 minutes. Let's be honest, are we really THAT busy. Put it in your calendar and please, Choose You. Make you and your loved ones happy and stay healthy by staying on top of your health, just like my dad!

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