The Bridges we Cross

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   ( I thought that I would start posting video blogs on you tube to go along with my written blogs. Curiosity has me wondering which will get more attention. Then I would know where to focus more of my time. I worked on one this afternoon but wasn’t happy with the results so I’ll try again tomorrow afternoon.)
  The topic of today’s was a serious one. It deals with bridges, the physical bridges and the metaphorical ones. Of course when you are traveling and come to a river, ravine, multi- level highways or in some cases a railroad track, there is need of a bridge. There are also bridges of other types, the metaphorical-. Those that take us through time as we cross from one age group to the next and the next. The bridges that take us across status from student to employee, from spouse to parent to grandparent. The bridge that takes us from healthful vigor to fighting a time of not so good health and back.
How we face and cross those bridges is up to us. We can approach the bridge and seeing its expanse sit down and give up. Complaining that it is too long, too high, too difficult, too something to the point that we just don’t try. We remain where we are, not getting to a place where we would be much better off. We could remain in that dead end job where the benefits never get better and the boss is never happy. We could watch our health deteriorate and marriage fall apart, because we can not put forth the effort to cross a supposedly difficult expanse.
 Or, we could see the bridge no matter how long or high or difficult as a challenge or what it is, in the way from one state of being to another. We can take the first step of many that will take us to a better place, a better way. Crossing may struggle, will at times be difficult, but we know that something better is waiting on the other side of that bridge. Each and every step that we take, is an improvement as we cross over the raging river of  challenges that we face.
 A ravine of health problems- whether it is cancer as mine was, diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, heart problems, obesity, the list goes on and on as far as the possibilities of health worries.
  When I came to my personal health bridge, I was diagnosed with cancer. I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008- I’m fine now. I do not recall ever being afraid, not from the moment it was confirmed to the moment everything was finished.  Then, there was concern as I had no idea what I was about to go through. I knew it was considered a battle, even though looking back my battle wouldn’t even be considered a skirmish compared to what some people go through. My journey- my bridge relatively short. But battle and journey, it was. I did at times feel alone, but those times were short. The most difficult part for me, was the radiation treatments as they left me feeling lifeless and weak. The bridge seemed to be going straight up making it nearly impossible to put one foot in front of the other. I had to make changes in my diet as I was a big time, hard core junk food junkie. Because of how the radiation treatments were effecting my body I couldn’t eat it any more even as I still craved sweets. The processed stuff made me even more tired and weak than I already was. I found that fruits such as watermelon soothed that craving.

Once I finished all of my treatments, I continued  eating the fruits and vegetables. Changing my diet as I crossed the bridge has kept me healthier and helped me to regain my strength and energy. I wanted too, to do all that I could to prevent cancer from returning as I had and have no desire to have a return engagement with cancer.
I have learned that exercise (while difficult during cancer treatments) can help prevent cancer and other diseases or make them less of a battle to fight. It isn’t just physical exercise either. If you exercise your brain by reading, by studying, by playing mind games you help to slow down or event possibly prevent the onset of age related dementia. I have tried to not only exercise my brain by studying on how to help prevent my cancers return, in any and all means possible. What I have learned will not only help me, but many others.
The food that we consume, when we pop a processed something in a microwave or oven we actually have no idea what we are eating. The list of ingredients sounding more like a science experiment gone bad than an entree for dinner. When you first change to more -or totally-whole foods and less or no processed you will be able to tell the difference. It may take a while to get the kitchen set up for real cooking, and having to purchase the items needed as in seasonings, but your body and your family and friends will appreciate your efforts. Fruits and vegetables all have their own nutrients that are good for us. It depends on the color as to what is held within. A variety of different colored fruits and vegetables, especially if they are organic will help your body fend off invaders. They can help as antioxidants, as anti-inflammatory, strengthen immune systems, clean out the pipes and build up your bones just a few among the long list of benefits.
Cutting back on if not completely out the processed sugars helps. It can be done- trust the former junk food junkie. Don’t fall for that sugar substitute trap either. Some of those are reported to actually increase your cravings for sweets. There are snacks out there that are good without added sugars. Drinking water can be bland, but add squeezed fruit juice to give it flavor.
Meat. We honestly do not know much about the meats that we purchase. We do not know how the animals were raised, whether they were given antibiotics or fed genetically modified grains. If you know of a farm that raises and slaughters their own meats and you know how they care for these animals so much the better. If you cut back on or choose to go vegetarian, that too is better for your health.
Exercise, briefly mentioned already, but get up.. get up.. get up off that couch or recliner or out of that chair and away from the TV or computer and move. Go dancing, go walking, go ride a bike, play some basket or softball. Join a fitness group.
Stress……..is a killer, or can be. It makes health problems worse, it can create health problems. Find ways to ease or rid your life of stress as best that you are able. My stress relief is visiting the pond, sitting on the bank, leaning on the bridge railing and watching the ripples cross the surface. I listen to the birds, the tree frogs and what ever other critter is in the woods. Feeling a breeze blow across my face sends the stress and tensions floating away. There are always different ways to relieve stress, high impact exercise, reading, music, swimming, hiking alone or with friends. Putting the phone down, walking away from the computer, finding a hammock under a shade tree and concentrating on the song birds. If that hammock isn’t available, if you’re somewhere that you can’t get outside, find a book that you can lose yourself in, maybe a good movie that won’t make the tension worse, a radio playing. there are endless ways, if you seek them out.
We are going to cross a lot of bridges, we can’t get out of most of them. We will age, we will cross from one status to another. We will change jobs, we will have physical challenges with health or weight or something. We will come upon those bridges and it will be up to us to decide how we will handle them. Will we give up and stagnate where we are, or face the challenge and forge ahead, anticipating what awaits on the other side?

About rebecca s revels

A writer, a photographer, a cancer survivor. An adventurer of the mild kind, a lover of the simple pleasures such as long walks and chocolate. A Christian unashamed of my faith and a friend who is dependable and will encourage readily. Author of three self published books with more waiting to find their way to paper. An advocate of good things, a fighter against wrongs.
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1 Response to The Bridges we Cross

  1. I will post the link to the video when its available.

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