Our hearts go out to Lydia and her family during this difficult time.
via – Lydia M., AbsoluteFIT Participant | Almaden Valley Athletic Club
I was planning to write a post about how I maintained — or didn’t maintain — my fitness routine and nutrition goals through Christmas week, but then life took a major, unexpected and altogether terrible turn: My mother’s COPD, which had been bad but manageable, worsened suddenly, and she passed away on December 21. I was able to get to her in Texas before she passed, and for that I’m grateful. But she was only 66 years old, and it happened so fast — I can’t help feeling she was robbed of years of her life. We were robbed — her daughters and son, her young grandchildren, her brother, her friends. So please forgive me getting strident here, but:
People: DO NOT SMOKE.
I’ve never really smoked tobacco, except for a few Lucky Strikes in high school (brand chosen entirely because of Pump Up The Volume) and a pack or two of Rothmans in college (suave Anglophile friend’s influence), in a failed effort to look cool; I got nothing good out of it, and they made my head feel like a lead balloon, so it never “took” for me.
My mom, however, was a pack-a-day smoker for nearly 30 years. She quit for good in 1996, but the damage was done. Cigarettes caused all kinds of problems for her: periodontitis, stomach/digestive issues, decreased immune function, damaged eyesight, you name it. And added to those miseries, it isn’t just lung cancer that smoking can kill you with: There’s also stroke, heart attacks, diabetes, and COPD, all of which are pretty awful — and PREVENTABLE — ways to go.
I should know about that last one. I was there, and I am wrecked. I’m grasping at whatever slivers of good I can find right now, and if this story prompts even one person to stop smoking — or never start — it will be worth the pain of writing it down.