A few weekends ago, I traveled home to Virginia for a funeral. While love going home, I wish I would have been able to go under different circumstances. A friend of the family, one who was just seven years older than me, departed this life and I’m still in shock over it. Our friend Rob had a series of health complications and ended up having a heart attack. He then “coded” several times over the course of a few days and his family eventually decided not to put him or themselves through that anymore. It was a sad occasion and certainly caused me to reflect on how I live my life.
As a sat there in the wake and funeral service and heard all of the kind words said about him, I thought “gosh Rob was so well loved!” He lived his life in such a way that impacted not just his immediate family but many others. He made a difference in his short 47 years - so much so that hundreds of people attended his funeral and many had to stand the entire time because we ran out of seats! Rob’s legacy is one that I can only hope that I can come close to achieving, but I sure am going give it my best and let God do the rest.
My question for you: What legacy are you leaving?
Yes, some things are out of our control. We can’t change our family history or ethnic background and these traits do play a role in our risk for disease. I want to challenge you, however, to control what you can control and do what you can do. Not just for yourself, but for those that are watching you.
Are you giving your children an example worth repeating? Are you leaving a legacy that stresses the importance of taking care of yourself? Can your family see that getting the proper rest, eating properly and being physically active are top priorities by your actions, not your words?
I haven’t birthed any kids. I don’t know what it’s like to be a mother. My only point of comparison is being a godmother. What I’ve learned in the 5 short years that I’ve had this awesome responsibility, is that my darling god daughter picks up on what I do. Since I get up each morning and exercise, she's able to mimic me and my routines. When I start slicing up an apple, she asks me to slice her one too. I could certainly just tell her these things are important, but I pray that my example will inspire her to make health and fitness a priority. Not because I told her it was important, but because I demonstrated its importance. I won’t have to say "do as I say, not as I do"; at least not in this area :).
I aspire to leave a legacy of hope - one that inspires people to believe that in spite of overwhelming obstacles it is possible to change your life. I am a witness that it is. Will you help me by committing to make your own personal changes? Francois de La Rochefoucauld said “nothing is so contagious as an example; and we never do any great good or evil which does not produce its like.” Together, we can change the world, one person at a time.
coach tam's Blog
40-something who loves food, fitness, and fun!