My neighbors are living way beyond the age my parents reached when they died and I wonder what it was that has kept them alive for so long, what in their genes or lifestyles or luck produced a long living life. They didn't grow up without childhood diseases, without possibility of starvation or poisoning. Dietary guidelines weren't even on the horizon during most of their youth as well. A balanced diet, exercise, stress reduction are late comers to the scene. They probably all had measles and whooping cough.
When jogging came on the scene, and with it, running shoes, matching clothes, I was a new mother, juggling work, shopping, keeping the household running smoothly. I owned one pair of tennis shoes with flat soles that were thin and made of rubber that seemed to come apart in strips every time I actually tried to use them for tennis.. They were hot and flimsy for shopping; never mind using them on a hot asphalt in Southern California, where tennis courts and swimming were exercises I could have indulged in.
Ten years later, high heels at work began to give way to flat or semi-flat loafers and high priced running shoes with basketball heroes emblazoned all over the back heel were paraded everywhere, sign of status among high school students as well as their teachers. Ties disappeared from apparel at the same time. Sweat pants were seen everywhere, among joggers as well as on shopping mothers.
You'd think that with all that emphasis on exercise and all the ingenuity of medical devices for the last few decades, our health as a nation would have improved, and our lifestyles would be enhanced in so many ways.
Were we naive about the choices we made? Or the elimination of Home Economics and P.E from schools' curriculum kept us in the dark? Or the addition of so many fast foods and packaged snacks replacing old fashioned oatmeal and fresh fruit changed our taste?
Were these big or small decisions?
Were they even decisions?