Life teaches you the best lessons when you’re least expecting to learn. Of the many divine interventions (I’d like to believe so!) that taught me some valuable lessons, I recently learned about how I’d been taking my health for granted.

A couple of weeks back I had to get a thyroid test done. Inspite of it being just for a formality, I was anxious about the results. I had done what doctors normally warn you not to. I randomly googled symptoms and to my utter dismay Google told me I had a lot to worry about. 

No one looks forward to visiting a hospital and I’m no exception. My problem is, I over-analyse the complications that arise from my imagination. I remember the time I tripped and fell down during an event. I had severe headache for 2 days. Unable to tolerate my tantrums any longer, Mom fixed an appointment with our Doctor. The night before the appointment I was convinced that I was suffering from brain tumour. I hardly slept that night. I hope you get the drift.

Trying not to think about the google results, I sat at the reception waiting to speak to the doctor. I was surprised at the crowd on a working day. It then struck me that when viruses come to attack you, they don’t bother if it is a weekday or a weekend, they just attack. I was observing those around me as I like to watch people and see how people talk, react or behave when they think no one is watching them. I like getting that insight into someone else’s world.

As I sat there, watching people of all ages come and go by walk/wheelchairs/stretchers, I wondered how different their lives must be. From what I could gather, it looked like a few of them were admitted in the hospital, some of them had been coming regularly for treatment and a few were there to check the progress of their treatments. One thing was clear – the hospital visits were an integral part of their lives, but that did not stop them from living their lives. Going by the way they spoke and went about it a hurry, it was clear that they were headed someplace post their appointment and only a few of them were going back home.  It was astonishing to see the spirit with which they dealt their lives. And here I was, complaining that my life was beginning to feel monotonous.

I wasn’t eavesdropping but the discussions happening around me were way more than I could bear to listen. I felt bad for all those who endured the pain they were frequently susceptible to, and still managed to go about living their lives. I felt silly at the thought of being worried for something so insignificant, for which I had come for. Radiation and Chemotherapy was another part of their lives and they still managed a smile. God bless them.

There have been very few instances when I realised the importance of maintaining a healthy body. As someone prone to the common cold, I’ve realised the value of a completely functional nose only after fighting the cold. And then I forget about it until the next time. This visit to the hospital was a reality-check of sorts to see how life could have been demanding and different, yet I failed to appreciate how I was lucky to not be at the mercy of oxygen masks and tablets.

We live in a world where stress and depression are taking a toll on us as we chase insurmountable targets. When our passion turns into an obsession, we ignore everything around us and focus only on the goal. We run so quickly that we don’t pay heed to the warning signs from those around us and keep pushing on, beyond our tolerable limits. The only way we stop to notice is when nature unprecedentedly knocks our door and tells us that we’ve been causing a lot of damage to our body. By the time we notice, we’re probably on our way to the  hospital.

The good news is, we all know how incorporating the small changes would help us lead a better, active and healthy lifestyle. We’ve all read about it and even agree with it. But the bad news is, we’re in constant denial that we could be at the receiving end of health complications. We end up taking our lives for granted without realising the importance of our health. All we have is just this one life and I’m not sure if we can afford to abuse it.

We only miss things we are used to, when they are taken away from us. Similarly, we value our health only when we’re sick.   If we’re lucky, time and money would help us get to a better state. However, some people don’t have the luxury of time. And we slowly realise that there are still some things that money cannot buy.

I always knew I was taking a lot of things for granted, but that day I realised the extent to which I was pushing it. Someone rightly said that we should take good care of our body, it’s the only place we have to live. It’s about time we realised it.

Image Courtesy: Pixabay