Embracing Wellness: A Father's Day Reflection
Father's Day holds a special place in our hearts as we celebrate the invaluable role of fathers in our lives. It is a time to reflect on the lessons passed down from generation to generation, and the profound impact fathers have on shaping our well-being. Today, I want to share with you the wisdom I gained from my father's journey towards end of life, highlighting the importance of prioritizing our well-being.
My father’s health had been poor for at least the past decade. He spent a lot of time in and out of hospital, especially in the last months of his life. The experience was one that no family should go through, but many do.
Every time the medical team managed to control one health condition, it seemed that another would flare up, confounding my father’s doctors and their efforts. From infections to failing kidneys to heart failure to fluid retention—well, you get the picture. I lost track of the multitude of tests he endured, but among them were electrocardiographs, echocardiograms, X-rays, CT scans, ultrasounds, and daily blood tests. He found it challenging to eat or drink. Finally, he simply wanted to go home.
My father comforted me the last time I saw him alive. He told me he was ready to go and asked me to take care of our family. I cried when he held my hand as he had done at times over the years, because now his big, strong hands were weak and frail.
On February 11, 2018, my father took his last breath at the age of 85. He found solace in the comfort of home, surrounded by his loved ones and the compassionate nurses at Haro Park Centre.
Most of the issues that my father faced were preventable. He could have aged so differently if he had eaten well, kept physically active and stayed more socially engaged, along with all the other things that we promote for active aging. Sadly, my father experienced a profound change in his lifestyle and his quality of life after his health and mobility declined. While he had those additional years of life, he was unable to live them fully.
I wanted more years with my father. I won’t have them. But, through my advocacy of active aging, I want to ensure that other fathers and brothers, mothers and sisters, live as long, and as fully, as possible before they die. And, that they experience a beautiful death when it comes time to leave their families.
On this Father's Day, let us pause and consider the significance of wellness in our lives. As we celebrate the fathers who have guided and nurtured us, let us also acknowledge the importance of prioritizing our health and well-being. When we invest in ourselves, we not only enhance our own lives but also set an example for our children and future generations.
So, as we reflect on the lessons learned from our fathers, let us honor their memory by embracing a lifestyle that fosters wellness. Take a moment to appreciate the simplicity of daily activities, cherish the time spent with loved ones, and make conscious choices to nurture your physical, mental, and emotional well-being. By doing so, we not only gift ourselves a life of vitality but also create a lasting legacy for those who come after us.
This Father's Day, as I observe the lines on my hands, reminiscent of the ones I first noticed on my father's hands many years ago, I am reminded of the legacy he left behind. He may no longer be with us, but his teachings and the importance of wellness resonate deeply within me.
Happy Father's Day to all the fathers out there, who inspire us to lead lives of strength, love, and well-being. May we carry their wisdom in our hearts as we strive for a healthier and brighter future.
Note: This information is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified healthcare professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from research. The view expressed here are not necessarily those of the ICAA, we encourage you to make your own health and business decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified professional.