Finding My "WHY?"

Monday, February 5, 2018

Sometimes it takes finding out that someone close to you is having health problems before you to realize just how important eating healthy and staying fit is. As strange as it is, I have known my family's history of health/heart problems, but I somehow didn't catch on to the fact that I might not be invincible....shocker, right?

My great grandfather suffered 3 strokes before he passed away, my grandfather has had surgery for carotid arteries, and my great uncle has had multiple bypasses coupled with additional, very severe heart issues. Cholesterol issues and heart disease run rampant on both sides of my Dad's family...again, I somehow developed this train of thought that I would be healthy forever - I hope you're rolling your eyes and/or face palming right now.

Believe it or not, I have worked in the health industry for many years, and seen first-hand how regular exercise, regular chiropractic adjustments, massages, and a healthy diet can transform someone's life in a matter of months! I had a patient who came into our office with a long list of medications she was on - diabetes, cholesterol, arthritis, etc. - after she started to utilize our office's services (all listed above, and then some) she made INCREDIBLE gains. A few months after she began our programs, she walked into our office with a big smile on her face, and told me that her doctor guaranteed her that if she kept up with her routines, she would be off of at least half of her medications by summer. **I have witnessed at least 100 stories like this one, first-hand!!!**

Even after working in the health industry, reading terrible blood test results regularly, seeing health issues disappear, and witnessing lives transform, I STILL HADN'T RECEIVED MY WAKE UP CALL....until yesterday. I discovered that my father is struggling with terrifying cholesterol levels, and this man has worked out regularly for as long as I can remember. Guys, my father is not invincible...what the f***. This is the man I have looked up to and idolized for 23 years. His father, the one who had carotid artery surgery, has also been a personal hero of mine...but all of his major surgeries happened when I was much younger and he came through them like a superhero - to a child that makes him invincible.

When I made the realization that my father is having health issues, it hit me like a ton of bricks. It went something like this: "holy shit how could my dad have health issues...he DOESN'T have health issues...he can't! Oh My GOD"...then my experience with my patients kicked in. Que me texting my father books of information. Then I went into research mode...finding out what I did not, already, know about these issues - no I did not go to WebMD...that place can convince me that my hair has cancer.

After spending one afternoon at work freaking the f*** out, because that is what I do, I realized that I don't take well enough care of myself. Here I am, with my anxiety in overdrive thinking that I am going to loose my dad soon, and I realize my father is one of the healthiest individuals I know. One of the healthiest I have ever known. He has been an example of how to take care of yourself since my impressionable brain can remember. And I am over here just now realizing that my metabolism has slowed to a snails pace and I am only fueling myself with Smartfood White Cheddar Popcorn and ice cream.

I haven't even had children yet. And as a child myself, I am worried about loosing my Dad. It has dawned on me that I need to get my shit together and start taking care of myself. That I need to be the example to my future children, that my father has been for me. While we can't change what has happened in the past, we can take the present and the future and change them for the better.

We can do what my father has done for my whole life. Look at the current situation and realize our health, this body, is all we can control. And while I don't know exactly what it was that made my father realize that, I am sure it had a little something to do with knowing how it feels as a child and grandchild to fear for your hero's health.

I have been told, way more times than I can count, that everyone has to find their motivation to make lifestyle changes. Until now, I didn't know what my motivation was...doing it for myself wasn't a good enough reason because ice cream and popcorn make me just as happy as the idea of being healthy. I have found my motivation. It is to make sure I am healthy enough to be on this earth for as long as possible. For a long life with my incredible husband; for my future children, grand children, and great grand children.

With February being Heart Health Month (AKA Heart Disease Awareness Month), now is the perfect time for you to find your why. Find what motivates you to fully change your life. There is no changing the past, but the future is yours.

 Love Always, 
                        Kaitlyn B

Photo by Justyn Warner on Unsplash 

Photo by Adam Sherez on Unsplash

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