Break up to Wake up...

My year of healthy living has gotten off to a rather rough start. Instead of me getting to make noble choices and regally turning my nose up at certain foods and or activities, thereby leaving me with at least a shred of my dignity (it certainly would have made me feel a little better about turning down that second scoop of double chocolate ice cream), I had a very scary wake up call instead.

During the holiday season I fractured my hand. Nothing major about that in of itself, but when I told my orthopedic doctor that I had hurt it while playing with the kids he got one of those looks on his face you don't ever want to see. You know what I mean if you've ever seen it. It begins with a slight raise of an eyebrow and then the subtle shadow of concern slowly falls across the features, not a good look when you are sitting on paper sheets that smell of antiseptic.

He suggested that we go ahead and run a bone density test,which sounded benign enough or so I told myself. I mean, I am only 30 years old, a cancer survivor, what could possibly be wrong now???

Skip ahead tp results time. He sat me down and hands me one of those squishy stress balls. I probably have a more than a dozen of these stress thing-a-ma-bobs in all sorts of shapes and sizes (what can I say I collect weird things ok?) so I begin to play with it, almost forgetting that I am there to get news about my bone density scan. Finally he clears his throat and I stop playing and look up to meet a somber expression. My file is open on his lap.

"So let's see're 30 years old right...." (not actually a question) "well if your bones have anything to say about it you're closer to 50."

I dropped the ball.

My mouth fell open.

I thought I would have a stroke right then and there.

My bones were what??????

He went on to tell me that I was in the beginning stages of osteoporosis and needed to exercise (low impact), beef up on calcium and avoid certain foods and beverages that leached calcium or prevented calcium from being absorbed by my body.One of the biggies....soda.

I began to tune out as visions of my grandmother's poor bent and gnarled hands danced before my eyes. She's been through two surgeries and honestly I can;t remember a time when they weren't twisted into "claws".

I find myself often looking at my own hands and now sneaking glances at my mothers just for comparisons - there really are so many. Will my daughter end up the same way?

It has been more than a month since I received the glum news and giving up soda was horrible at first. I was a true diet soda addict, consuming several cans a day. But now that I am free of it, I feel like I can play with my daughter and maybe I am setting a better example for her. Maybe she won't be in my predicament when she's my age. I also signed her up along with my boys for soccer and agreed to be her coach.

Maybe my bones are a bit more brittle, but this is not the end for me. It was simply the wake up call I needed so that I can be around for a good while longer.

"Whoever fights monsters should see that in the process he does not become a monster. When you look long into the abyss, the abyss also looks into you." - Nietzsche


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