Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Why Does Health Matter so Much to me?

I often have clients or followers wondering how the heck I put my health as a priority so consistently. Where does my motivation come from?|
Let me share with you part of what drives me.


I found out June 2004 that my Mom had cancer. She had been "sick" since January of that year, but for five months, doctors had been telling her she had pneumonia. Somehow, in a place deep inside myself, I knew the truth. I remember saying to my husband Jeff that I thought it was lung cancer and if it was, I would kill myself. Shortly after, my fears were confirmed.

I had two weeks to process the news. Two weeks to grasp that my Mom was fighting a very serious disease. Two weeks to research survival rates of stage 4 lung cancer. I had two weeks to wonder how the hell this had happened.

Two weeks later was my Mom's first chemotherapy session during which she passed away. Two weeks isn't a lot of time to get your head wrapped around the notion that your best friend in life was going to lose a battle that she never stood the chance against from the beginning. It wasn't enough time for me. Though looking back I can now recognize that no amount of time would have ever been enough.

After her death we requested an autopsy, though the reason behind that is vague in my mind now. It all happened so suddenly for me, that I was doubting cancer's ability to just take her away so suddenly. I was searching for someone to blame, something specific to hate. And I hoped my answer would appear in a misdiagnosis.

I never saw the results of the autopsy but they were relayed to me. Just about every organ, every cell of my Mom's body was smothered in cancer. How could she not have known? How could I have just spent that past Christmas with her and not have a clue that she was so sick? It snuck up on her, on us, and took her from us before I realized she was dying, before I even understood that she was sick. She was living in Alberta at the time while I reside in Ontario. When I was told she passed away, all I could say was "but she wasn't even sick. She wasn't sick. I don't understand, she wasn't sick." The image of my Mom was of a healthy, happy woman, not of someone who was sick. Her spirit didn't portray a dying woman, it portrayed strength and courage.

My Mom never worked out, she drank for many years, she smoked.
(Oh, on a side note, if anyone you know is diagnosed or passes away from lung cancer, don't ever ask if they smoked, it's completely irrelevant and certainly doesn't make the disease okay. I hated that question.)

My Mom spent many years neglecting her health. She didn't pay much attention to nutrition and abused the vehicle of her life as so many of us do to some degree. I'm sure she never assumed she would get sick. She probably didn't consider the consequences or her actions (or lack of actions), or if she did, didn't think they applied to her. Does this sound familiar? I don't blame my Mom for what happened, I'm not angry or resentful. I wish she would have taken better care of her not just so she would have more years, but so the years that she DID have were happy ones with vibrant health.

Instead, I am 35 years old and haven't seen my Mom in 12 years. My kids will never know her. How awful is that?

I now have 3 young children aged 7, 4 and 2. I love these little people with every fiber of my soul. I look into their eyes and vow to myself to do all I can to ensure I am here for them as long as possible. I will teach them how to care for themselves through health, love, compassion and confidence. I need to be here for them so they never question if there is something they could have done differently to give me more time. I see their smiles and want to see them for many days, many years to come. I don't want to miss out on their graduations, weddings, children.....because I know how void going through those things without a Mommy can feel.

My motivation for eating good foods, working out and promoting the heck out of healthy living every single day rests in those three teeny tiny creatures who individually have the strength to lift me above self doubt, and who, together, have the strength to carry me through the rest of my years.

And it comes from the memory of my own Mama, who was my greatest teacher in life. Every single day I vow to her that I will take the greatest care of one of the people that meant the most to her - me. Because I am worth it.


If ever you are feeling the pull toward a healthier lifestyle but are unsure how to proceed, I encourage you to connect with me to discuss actionable steps you can start making toward the best version of you possible. Because YOU deserve it

xo

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