Who Says You Are Not Healthy

by DavalosMcCormack on December 1, 2008

When someone asks if you are healthy how do you answer? Mind your own damn business! I suppose you have to start by wondering what does being healthy mean in the first place. Is it simply the absence of disease, or is it something more complex.

If being healthy is just the absence of disease then there are a lot of people who run marathons, play tennis, swim regularly or ride their bike every day who are not healthy because they also happen to have diabetes or HIV or arthritis.

Maybe it’s something simpler and yet more complex. Maybe it’s a state of mind. Maybe you are healthy if you feel you are and you are working to stay that way.

For instance I know a woman named Alison Wright. She’s a photojournalist who has traveled the world taking pictures for National Geographic. More than 8 years ago she was horribly injured in a bus crash and almost died.

She broke her back, her pelvis, leg and ribs, her lungs were collapsed, her organs were shoved up into her left shoulder cavity, her heart was badly bruised and she was so badly cut by flying glass that she almost bled to death.

Since the accident she has undergone almost 20 surgeries, and every so often another piece of glass works its way out of her body. She keeps them in a small bowl as momentoes.

By every standard Alison is not healthy, yet since the accident she has climbed 19,000 foot Mount Kilimanjaro in Kenya, hiked at similar altitudes in the Himalayas and is back at work, doing what she loves.

Alison is one of the most alive people I’ve ever met. It’s all a matter of perspective.

Earlier this year Shirley wrote an article about a remarkable woman, Ida Fisher Davidoff who died at the age of 97 but lived as fully as she could right up to the end.

Ida told one interviewer “If after 65 you wake up without any pain or quake, you’re dead”

Sooner or later most of us will have some kind of ache, pain, tweak, strain or general stiffness of one kind or another. It’s often just a sign you are getting older. It doesn’t mean you are not healthy. Unless you decide it does and then stop being active.

So maybe being healthy actually has very little to do with your body, maybe it’s all in your head.

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