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Healthy Aging - "The Journey: A Look at Aging"

Updated on October 6, 2016

Good health and a positive attitude--keys to quality of life in later years

My mom, making a snowball in her late 70s
My mom, making a snowball in her late 70s | Source

Chapter 4 of a Collaborative Series of Articles about Aging


The years seem to overtake us while we aren't paying attention.

This journey called Life began for each of us with a newborn baby's cry--our own 'debut' wail at the world in which we'd arrived.The years dragged by so slowly when we were children eager to grow up. Suddenly we were young adults, and life stretched before us endlessly. There were so many choices to make and adventures to pursue. We felt invincible. Doesn't every twenty-something think life will glide on like that forever?

Was it overnight we became middle-aged? It seemed that way. When did those first strands of gray hair begin to appear? Now we reach the autumn of our years and, for some of us, the pace may be slowing. How we lived during the earlier parts of our journey will likely influence this stage.

Some of us are retired; others keep working for the satisfaction, income or both. However we spend this time, these are our "Golden Years." Good health, staying active and maintaining a positive attitude can help us enjoy them to the fullest.

Get outdoors and enjoy nature!
Get outdoors and enjoy nature! | Source

What if....?

©Jaye Denman

If I could only be again

the girl who once was Me

with youthful air of innocence

and laugh of gaiety

If I could just retrace my steps

to the place I was back then

and have the chance to alter

the way my life has been

Would I do other than I’ve done,

a wiser pathway go

to realize all ambitions?

Alas! I’ll never know!

(But...,I think not.)

Stay active to maintain body strength: "Use it or lose it."


This is Chapter 4 of 16 chapters written by 16 hub authors on the topic of aging. A new chapter was published on HubPages each weekday during the active phase of this project by a participating author, from Chapter 1 through Chapter 16. Links to each chapter are provided at the bottom of this screen. (UPDATE: Some of the original chapters were unpublished by the authors after the project concluded. However, those that remain on HubPages are well worth reading.)


My Question is:

"At this point in our lives, can we reverse damage already done by poor health choices we made along the way, or are we to suffer the consequences as we age?"


The Answers are:


My answer: Much of the health information responsible for increased life expectancy and quality of life was not available when I was young or even middle-aged. Misinformation and controversy about the route to good health abounded, and the guidelines kept changing like fast cars switching lanes on a freeway. I lacked knowledge of what constituted a healthy diet and why it was important. For a half-century, much of what I consumed was unhealthy. Now I choose organic, unprocessed foods and eat as nutritious a diet as possible.

I knew exercise was necessary for fitness, but only recently was its importance to the brain, as well as the physical body, discovered. My lifestyle has been too sedentary, and an accident left me with physical challenges that now prevent the long walks I would enjoy. Aqua therapy and yoga to the rescue! Muscles that aren't used will atrophy, losing strength as well as tone.

Environmental toxins? Prescription drugs side effects? Stress overload and insomnia? I was ignorant of their dangers until a couple of years ago. Now I’m a convert to the holistic approach to good health. More doctors are encouraging the prevention of disease instead of waiting for their patients to need a cure, and that's a step in the right direction.

I practice healthy habits every day, believing that even a small improvement is better than none. Some things I can control; others, I cannot. I’d be foolish to ignore any factor that I can influence for better health.


Her answer: Most of us have incurred or even inherited various health issues. There are few things in life without consequences, but the most important aspects of life are the constant and continuing choices at our present disposal. Some may seem insignificant, but almost all set off a network of further results, each bringing further choices leading to their logical ends.

The good news is that, at any point in our lives, we can reverse some damages from poor choices by reversing choice patterns; most importantly, we can avoid furthering damage over which we do and will continue to have choice.

Possibly when poor choices and their consequences pile up without one’s awareness for stopping their flow, the consciousness and awareness that they CAN be changed may also diminish as a consequence.

Awareness is the key. Things don’t fully ‘just happen’ for better or worse. One must consciously choose (or have established the habit of) the wiser choices, backed up with specific plan and effort. Sadly, otherwise, poor choices replicate themselves or simply occur ‘by default’, easily proving to be paths of least resistance—till the piper demands to be paid. Choosing well is worth its effort. Things can be reversed.


His answer: Much of the damage done by the choices we have made can be corrected or minimized by changing the way we live now. Attitude is paramount, and following that, diet and exercise are both vital to our health. Having a positive attitude can make a huge difference in the way our bodies function and react to the environment we live in.

I believe that many people place their health in the hands of a doctor and end up living on a host of medicines that, truthfully, are killing us. A better choice is to live an active, positive life and eat healthy foods.

Ω This response was written by former HubPages member, Vincent Moore:

His answer: Reversing damages done by our poor health choices accumulated over our years depends, I believe, on a number of things—primarily the extent of damage done. If we are internally or externally damaged, then hopefully the medications we may be on are helping with the problem. If, however, the extent of damage is minor, then I would have to say that abiding by a healthy and active lifestyle should help curb any further damage.

I have lived a very athletic, demanding, disciplined lifestyle most of my life. I’ve arrived into my senior years in fairly good condition, other than a few minor joint annoyances. I don’t feel we have to suffer consequences of bad choices unless they are extremely bad health choices.

It’s up to all of us to live life in moderation, being very careful not to overindulge in excessive bad eating or poor exercise choices. Making wise choices in our younger years should pay huge dividends in our golden years.


Her answer: I don’t think there’s ever a point in life where we can’t do something about the damage we’ve done by poor health choices. Granted, some things can’t be reversed, like smoking damage, kidney damage, and so on, but if it is in a general sense, just like anything else it’s never too late.

We can always get up off our duffs and start walking. Walking is like the cure-all for everything. It improves our health in so many ways, and helps improve our outlook as the exercise touches us inside and out.

Changing our eating habits and making healthier food choices certainly can help our poor bodies face the day to day a little better by providing nutrients we haven’t had before. Just like watering a dying plant, better food can help nourish our aging bodies.

There is always something in life we can do to make things better, and, though better health choices may not completely reverse damage we’ve done, they can certainly give us a boost and help add a few days here and there to keep us around a little longer.


His answer: I am certain that we can reverse damage done by poor health choices earlier in life. Fortunately, I never smoked, but those who did, or do, can add years to their life by quitting. According to the American Cancer Society, benefits begin within minutes of your very last smoking experience and continue to do so. The risk of dying from lung cancer or heart disease or other smoking-related diseases continues to drop drastically every year after you quit.

I am a great believer in a healthy diet, and have tried for years to eat well-balanced meals, and also, despite arguments to the contrary about effectiveness, I have taken vitamin and mineral supplements for over thirty years.

Either I have really good genes or all the above works, I believe, since I need no prescriptions and see the doctor only for check-ups. The only exception to that is a yearly screening by a dermatologist for skin cancer, since I got way too much sun growing up in Texas and California.

Obesity in the United States is much in the news lately. As a nation, we are gaining too much weight, consuming too much fat and sugar. We all know how to remedy the consumption aspect of that, if only we will.


His answer: I read an article in a magazine years ago about an interview with a 100-year-old woman. At the bottom of the article was a picture of her smoking a non-filtered cigarette and holding a bottle of whiskey. She claimed to have always smoked a few cigarettes a day and had drunk a shot of whiskey at bedtime for most of her life. When she was asked, “What is your secret to living a hundred years?” her simple answer was, “I am happy.”

An old doctor once told me, “Moderation is the key to good health.” I don’t know if we can reverse the damage done to our health, but I do believe we can increase our chances of a longer and better life if we decrease our bad habits of excess. Some of the most health-conscious people I know seem to be sick far more than others who totally disregard good health guidelines.

Perhaps…excessive health-oriented habits do somewhat the same damage as bad health habits because of added stress. Maybe finding a good balance that fits our individual minds and bodies is the key. I believe—at any point in our lives—it is good to treat ourselves better than before. We just have to make sure we don’t under or overdo it.

Ω silvergenes (This user is apparently no longer on HubPages.)

Her answer: Cause and effect is not merely a theory embraced by Buddhists, it is central to Newton’s Law of Motion and applies to all things in our physical world, including our actions. If we have made poor choices, there will be consequences unless your name is Keith Richards.

However, the same is true if we begin to make wise choices. We can lower blood pressure, strengthen our muscles, lose excess weight and bring our cholesterol into an optimum range. Diet and the use of certain nutraceuticals can give our bodies the tools needed to effect repairs where they are warranted.

Repairs take time. Relief by masking symptoms can be instantaneous. It’s when we give up our control that we run into trouble and head for the pharmaceuticals/recreational drugs/comfort food. But isn’t that how we got ourselves into this mess in the first place?

While there are certainly times when pharmaceuticals can be life-saving, they work by blocking specific enzymes, and over the long term, this is not conducive to overall health. The same holds true for their above-mentioned partners in crime. Hold your course and ride out the storm. Yes, you can make a difference and help your body heal.


His answer: Absolutely. We can make wise choices in foods we eat, activities we attend, hours we spend working or resting, getting enough sleep and even social interaction. All of these areas can be made healthier and wiser by just taking one good “honest” look and evaluate each area and ask ourselves, “Is this activity, food choice, work ethic a wise choice or one that will keep the cycle of bad health intact in my own life?”

This is a baby step, of course. But it’s a key step to live longer, healthier and much happier.


Her answer: There are consequences to everything we do or don’t do. But there is almost nothing that is irreversible physically. You can quit smoking today and reduce, maybe not reverse, the damage you have done. You can change your diet and activities and start on a different path to the rest of your life. Even with a life-threatening illness, there are things you can do to deal with the condition and make it somewhat easier to endure, or at least easier than it would have been if you did nothing.

I know the knee I broke a few years ago may well come back to torment me as I age, so I stay active. I know all those hours of sun-bathing will catch up to me eventually in the form of wrinkles and age spots, so I don’t do it any more, and take better care of my skin.

There is a saying, “Your sins will find you out.” They probably will, but I’m not going to make it easy for them.

Ω cjsledgehammer is apparently no longer on HubPages.

His answer: You pose a very good question, but, unfortunately, the reality is that no one really knows for sure. A lot of it depends on the nature of the poor health choices, the severity of the damage that has already been inflicted and the individuals themselves.

One must also consider the steps that have been taken to alleviate prior damage, because sometimes the so-called remedies can make things even worse than before.

Indeed…there are some poor health choices that can be reversed within a year if proper action is taken immediately. Many health complications associated with smoking, for instance, can be reversed or side-stepped altogether if immediate action is taken and new healthy behaviors are adopted.

Let’s face it—some people can overcome some of the poor choices they made earlier in life, while others are destined to suffer the consequences. Perhaps the most reasonable thing to say regarding this issue is: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”


Her answer: This is an important question that requires more medical, scientific expertise than I possess. I suppose it depends. It is possible to stabilize certain health conditions, perhaps not all, and prevent further deterioration through dietary changes and physical exercise. I am thinking of exercises prescribed by a physical therapist to address specific physical injuries.

Research has demonstrated that after quitting smoking, a person can expect the lungs to begin to heal. Some medical techniques can turn back the clock. My brother’s knee deteriorated after a skiing accident; he dealt with unrelenting pain. Because of recent knee replacement surgery, he walks pain free for the first time in two decades.

However, I think there are some diseases, injuries and health conditions exacerbated by lifestyle choices which cannot be reversed, and deterioration becomes inevitable. In those situations we must depend upon our faith, the strength of our moral fiber, the flexibility of our innate personality in order to create and enjoy the best life possible under difficult circumstances.

I wish I could offer a more definite answer. However, I think our personal aging experiences will depend on many factors; some we can control, and others we cannot. It depends.


His answer: This appears to be a bit of a yes-and-no scenario. Obviously, it depends somewhat on the specific type of damage, and from a medical perspective, whether it is fixable. But I sense you’re really looking for more of a connotative response, as if to pose whether to see the glass as half full or half empty. I think there is actually a clear answer beneath the obvious.

If life has a trajectory, it does take a slowing of momentum to change any physical, mental or addictive course. There are myriad 12-step programs that have proven to be incredibly beneficial for millions of people. So an alcoholic has to live with the choices he has made, but he can choose to stop drinking, and even if he has made poor health choices to this point, he can stop the negative trajectory and commit to a better life.

I do think suffering is a choice, even if pain is not. History is full of people who had every reason to suffer through their lives and chose not to. I’ve spent too many of my own years feeling defeated, sad and angry at circumstance. What I found is that it just causes more of the same. It’s not always easy, but I now choose to place my attention on things that feel purposeful and inspirational. And that works for me.


His answer: The answer is NO, and, regrettably, we must suffer the consequences. We can stop further damage.

I have smoked Marlboro for 45 years and continue to smoke. I have been diagnosed with COPD and have difficulty breathing. If I stop now, I will always experience problems. I might stop someday. I smoke when I write and write when I smoke.

I am overweight—no, obese—no, I’m fat. I have been this way for twenty years. My clothes fit my body, and my body suits me as it is. I like food and love to cook. I’d rather die fat and happy than change my ways at this stage of my life. When I die, no one will be surprised, least of all me.


His answer: I suppose, to some extent, that we can reverse damage to our bodies done earlier in our life. But, I tend to stay away from the word “reverse.”

For example, if we incur COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), we may still live to old age by quitting smoking, diet and exercise and good medical care. We probably won’t reverse the disease, though. The same is true of heart disease and even some cancers. Surgery, stints, angioplasties and medication can stop the diseases, but not reverse them.

We can still live a long and happy life by making certain life changes. Exercise, proper diet, less stress and good medical care can enhance both your physical and mental well-being. And, that’s what it’s all about anyway. So, for the second part of your question, no, we need not suffer the consequences from earlier bad choices if we make the right choices now.


His answer: Many of the choices which affect our health are, indeed, reversible. Whether it arrests our bodies in the form of tobacco addiction, alcohol dependence, poor dietary habits, or simply from being sedentary, empirical evidence has demonstrated it is almost never too late to reverse both direction and consequence. The difficulty lies in letting it become a lifestyle. The effort to break free from an entrenched habit, like any addiction, becomes proportionately more difficult.

The most difficult consequences to shed in life are those inflicted emotionally upon one another. Such deeply embedded wounds follow us like shadows chained around the door of our hearts, with all intent, to lie beside us in the grave. They are reversible, but require from our heart the kind of forgiveness which we must beg from God.

To carry such weight through life is perhaps the greatest human tragedy, because it leaves us our life, but keeps our spirit, like a ghost ship anchored to the ocean floor. I have never witnessed anyone celebrate life while simultaneously chained to the past. We owe it to ourselves to become cruise ships until the fuel is gone.

Appreciate life's little pleasures to find contentment.


The Journey--a Collaborative Effort

This series about aging was a collaborative effort by 16 HubPages members/writers, each with his or her individual hub published to present a chapter. Each writer posed one question relative to some aspect of aging, and each responded to all the questions..

Questions and answers were the products of our genuine thoughts and feelings garnered from individual life experiences, beliefs and opinions. The questions asked were profound, and answering them required some soul-searching, yet participants were generous in their responses.

Our credentials? We are all individuals 'of a certain age', qualifying us to speak first-hand with some authority on the topic of Aging. As a group, we're in various stages of the ‘growing older’ process, ranging from AARP-eligibility range, or approaching it, (50s) to the eldest (80s). We're a cross-section of real people with varied life events, knowledge and values, willing to share some things we've learned along the way with each other and with you, the reader. We hope you derive both usable information and enjoyment from reading the remaining available chapters in THE JOURNEY - A Look at Aging.

This HubPages writing project was the brainchild of Alan Berry (aka 'arb' on HP), brought to fruition by a diverse team of writers. Alan was our guiding force from the beginning of this collaboration. Nellieanna Hay coordinated technical aspects of the series to ensure continuity among all the chapters. Every participant added significantly to the outcome envisioned by Alan, and the resulting ‘opus’ deserves a readership of all ages. If you find value in this series, we hope you will share each chapter you read with your followers and share chapter links with your friends on social networks, such as Facebook, Twitter, etc.

Because a lot of ground is covered in the question-and-answers section, you may want to read each response through once, then return and re-read the section slowly to discover any gems of wisdom you may miss the first time around.

If you've reached this point, you are probably following the series chapter by chapter. If you follow the links, you will not be disappointed in any of them. Each chapter is full to overflowing of life lessons absorbed, used and passed on freely to readers. We hope you will read each chapter until you complete the series.

Update March, 2014: Some of the chapters (articles) in this series were unpublished by their authors, but those that remain are listed at the end of this hub in a revised table of contents. Each of the remaining chapters is a stand-alone article that constitutes a valuable reading experience.


Pets can be "preventive medicine" for senior citizens!

A pet to love can brighten an older person's outlook. My mom (age 83) with a young Puppy Girl. They adored each other!
A pet to love can brighten an older person's outlook. My mom (age 83) with a young Puppy Girl. They adored each other! | Source
Puppy Girl and I are growing older together. We're even beginning to look alike since my hair turned gray!
Puppy Girl and I are growing older together. We're even beginning to look alike since my hair turned gray! | Source


I enjoy seeing an elderly couple holding hands or showing affection for each other. He takes her arm protectively as they walk up steps. She reaches out and straightens the edge of his collar. For them it's still very much, "You and me against the world, babe." Young people wrongly think they cornered the market on love and romance. How, then, do they account for those happy unions that last decades with the love of the couple for each other--even in very old age--quite obvious to onlookers?

Research indicates that a happy marriage is actually good for one's health. A strong marriage (and the key word is "strong") promotes a healthy immune system and seems to make men (on average) live longer. Perhaps it's because happily married people do look out for each other. They even take better care of themselves for their partner's sake. This seems to hold true for other committed long-term relationships as well.

Of course, single people can also reap these benefits if they remain socially active and have a good support system of family and friends. And if they get lots of hugs. Everyone needs hugs. (Remember that, and act accordingly.)

Read the other available chapters of THE JOURNEY by following the links below:

A Table of Contents ~~~~~~~~THE JOURNEY ~ A Look At Aging

(NOTE: Chapters 2, 3, 6, 8, 9, 11 ,12, 14, and 15 were unpublished by the authors at varying times after the project concluded, or perhaps they are published by those HubPages authors separately on their sub-domains under new titles. Those chapters that remain in the series, with links shown below, are valuable reads.)


Submit a Comment

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 3 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thanks, Audrey. I really enjoyed the collaboration among everyone who participated in 'The Journey' project. It's a shame that several of the writers left HubPages since its publication and removed their chapter(s). However, there are still several left that are very good.

    I enjoy learning new things that contribute to wellness and quality of life. It's wonderful that we can improve how we feel by the choices we make--even now. I especially believe that the food we eat plays a major role in health.

    Blessings to you as well....Jaye

  • brakel2 profile image

    Audrey Selig 3 years ago from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

    Jaye - This hub about the aging process is important, because many folks contributed an answer, and all answers were different. The consensus that we can all change right now was a great conclusion and might make others change their ways while they have the chance. Thanks to all for their contributions. Sharing Blessings, Audrey

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thanks, Shyron, and I appreciate the vote and sharing. I can personally identify with your grandmother's statement as I sometimes feel that way myself! (And it happened sooner than I expected....) For some reason, as long as we're healthy and energetic, it's difficult to visualize ourselves any other way. That's all the more reason for staying active and engaged with others as long as possible.



  • Shyron E Shenko profile image

    Shyron E Shenko 4 years ago from Texas

    Jaye this is an awesome hub. Voted that way too. I love reading this, so much information and I know I will be back, I book marked it to read it again. I don't want to forget this one.

    Voted up, ABI and shared

    My grandmother use to say: "I am a young girl trapped in an old body."

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thanks, Mary. I thought that re-reading the series at the beginning of a new year might be motivating to me as I work at maintaining my healthier lifestyle. I'm glad this chapter also reinforced your "no smoking" decision. Happy New Year! Jaye

  • tillsontitan profile image

    Mary Craig 4 years ago from New York

    I came back to read this wonderful hub again. Just like us, it never gets old! Thanks for resurrecting it and reminding me why I have quit smoking and giving me a bit more impetus to keep it up!

    I voted (again) up, useful, awesome, and interesting.

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thanks for your comments, Dania. I've actually been taking the supplement Resveratrol for the past year, and I eat a lot of nuts. I also eat a very healthy diet consisting of nearly all organic foods.

    While I don't overeat or eat junk food, from what I've read about the severely-restricted calories of the diet that may contribute to longevity, I don't think I could be happy if I felt hungry all the time. Good food is one of the enjoyments of life, though I do know a person who eats "like a bird" and doesn't seem to care about the taste of food.

    Sometimes elderly people lose their sense of taste, which makes them naturally restrict their food intake. I suspect that it's not only the amount of food taken in that matters, but what nutrients that food contains.

    Again, thanks for reading and contributing to this ongoing discussion about healthy aging.



  • Dania Razzak profile image

    Foyjur Razzak 4 years ago from Dhaka

    Studies being conducted about the anti-aging outcomes of calorie-restricted diets are promising and ongoing. Resveratrol can be found in nuts and grapes. Resveratrol in supplements is frequently based on Japanese knotweed roots. Another way to obtain resveratrol may be the roots of the South American shrub called Senna quinquangulata.

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

    You're still a "spring chicken", Gerry, as we say here in the Deep South. If I were going to be 60 on my next birthday, I wouldn't ask for another gift! Thanks for the early birthday wishes. They'll give me momentum as I reach that day when I put a new decade number on my profile page.

    Birthdays do provide milestones for goal-setting, and I'm working feverishly to reach a couple of those myself.



  • sligobay profile image

    sligobay 4 years ago from east of the equator

    Hi Jaye. I just celebrated my 59th and have made so many promises to myself to achieve before my 60th. Markers and milestones help us set goals for ourselves. Happy early Birthday beats happy belated birthday.

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Hi, Gerry! Thanks for the birthday wishes, but they're a tiny bit premature. I'm still 50 days shy of my 70th birthday celebration. (Doesn't look as though I'm watching that calendar, does it? Ha!)

    It's great when someone new discovers "The Journey" and starts our series of hubs about aging on the rounds again. You're right--they're still relevant nearly a year later. Didn't we have a great time working together on this collaborative project?

    Hope all is well with you, my friend, and that you're having a happy weekend.



  • sligobay profile image

    sligobay 4 years ago from east of the equator

    Hello JayeWisdom. I hope you had a great 70th birthday. I can't believe that one year has eclipsed since we began our collaborative project. Our Hubs were unfolding 10 months ago and I anticipated the publication of each as if it were Christmas morning. Our work has stood the test of time as it remains relevant and interesting. Yours was a great question and elicited some wise responses. Cheers.

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thanks for reading and your feedback, Aunt Jimi. The older one grows, the faster time seems to pass. That makes taking care of one's self a priority.

    I'm "sneaking up on" my 70th birthday (less than two months away), and I have trouble believing I've been around so long!

    I hope you'll use the links to read this entire series. My collaborators on this project have excellent articles.


  • Aunt Jimi profile image

    Aunt Jimi 4 years ago from The reddest of the Red states!

    Lot of good and important information packed in this article. One thing is for sure, time really does fly and before you know it you're older than you ever thought you could be! Up and useful. Sharing,

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Torrilynn....Thanks so much for reading and for your comments. You're so right that the best time to prepare for a healthy and happy aging process is when you are young because prevention is always better than "repair", and some things resulting from a poor lifestyle can't always be reversed. It seems to me that a young person taking these lessons to heart now and striving to make healthy lifestyle choices will be much ahead of the game during her or his 40s, 50s, 60s and beyond.

    I hope you will use the links at the bottom of this chapter to find and read the remaining 15 chapters, as each is unique and offers a lot about the best ways to age.


  • torrilynn profile image

    torrilynn 5 years ago

    Hi Jaye,

    i really like your article here about aging and how you can age while still remaining healthy. i feel that as a society it is good to know techniques that can help us to age gracefully. well organized and very informative. i feel that it is best to start when you are young. thanks. voted up.

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thanks, Paul, for reading and sharing this chapter of THE JOURNEY. Your comments about approaching life with wisdom and forming healthy habits are insightful.

    I hope you will use the links at the bottom of Chapter Four to access and read the remaining 15 chapters of this series of hubs about "good" aging.


  • Paul Kuehn profile image

    Paul Richard Kuehn 5 years ago from Udorn City, Thailand


    This is a great useful hub that you have worked on with others. Life does pass by too quickly, and if you don't arrest bad habits as soon as possible, you will go to an early grave as some of my former coworkers have. Wisdom should come with age, but if you make decisions based on your heart rather than conscience, mistakes can be repeated in the eyes of rational people. Voted up and sharing.

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Yes, ktrapp....Life has a way of slipping up on us while we're busy, and...suddenly...we realize we're getting older. The time to prepare for old age is when you're young or, at least, middle-aged. Taking good care of yourself may help you face your senior years as healthy and vibrant.

    Thanks so much for reading and commenting on this chapter of a collaborative project about aging. I hope you'll follow the links to read the other chapters written and illustrated wonderfully by excellent HubPages writers. This series was a joy to work on, and I hope it continues to find readers.



  • ktrapp profile image

    Kristin Trapp 5 years ago from Illinois

    Your subtitle, "The years seem to overtake us while we aren't paying attention" caught my attention. That is just so true, and I fear if I cannot get a grip on some of life's stresses I will not age healthy. Your poem is really beautiful; there are certainly a few steps I wish I could retrace.

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thanks, Martie...I'm glad you found Chapter Four of THE JOURNEY useful and hope you read the entire series. I feel so fortunate to have been included among the sixteen HP writers who contributed to "A Look at Aging." I learned more from my writer-colleagues than I gave to the work and thank "arb" (whose wonderful idea this series was) for the opportunity. I hope THE JOURNEY continues to find readers for its insight into the aging process. Glad you're saving the link for future reference. Jaye

  • MartieCoetser profile image

    Martie Coetser 5 years ago from South Africa

    Excellent answers for relevant questions such as "Can we reverse damage already done by poor health choices" and "Are we suffering in old age the consequences of poor health choices"? A link to this hub goes straight to my personal library. Thank you, JayeWisdom :)

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    fiftyish....I'm glad I looked again at these comments and discovered that the response I gave to yours ... disappeared! That happens to me once in a while. I'm so klutzy it's a possibility that one of my fingers hits the delete button when I'm trying to post it.

    Since I can't remember what I wrote the first time, I'll just say "thanks" for reading and your comments. Also, I agree that there are many types of damage to our health we can "un-do" by making wiser choices as we go along through life, even if earlier ones were unwise and unhealthy. We certainly should try.

    I love what your mother's doctor said and intend to use that quote myself!

    I'm glad you're going to read the entire series. It has a lot to offer, and I gained more from participation in the project than I contributed.


  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thanks for your comment, btrbell, and for the link to your hub. I'll have to check that one out. I could probably use some "reinvention" myself!


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    Randi Benlulu 5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

    This great! Comprehensive. I am linking it in my hub on reinventing myself! Thank you!

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    Andy Aitch 5 years ago from UK & South East Asian Region

    Hi Jaye

    I think the responses here sum up the power of this series ;-)

    You open by saying: "Good health and a positive attitude - keys to quality of life in later years"

    Well ain't that the truth, more than most would ever know.

    Btw, i think damage can be undone from bad lifestyle choices. I might be wrong, but it is my belief that the liver can repair itself, and the lungs can clean up over time through smoking cessation. What I mean by this is that the human body is a remarkable thing, and with a little change in lifestyle and TLC, changes can and do occur for the best.

    I remember a doctor telling my friends 75 year old mother once that she really ought to stop smoking. She replied by saying; "Why would I want to quit cigarettes at my age?". The doctor’s response was that "Stopping smoking NEVER killed anyone".

    Love the hub, will surely go through the series too ;-)

    Andy Aitch

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Hi, molometer...I'm so glad you found THE JOURNEY and hope you read the entire series. Every chapter has something more to be shared/learned about this journey we're all taking together. I feel so honored to have played a small role in the project and actually learned much more from my colleagues' contributions than I gave to it. I'm pleased all over again as each new reader finds it. Thanks for votes and sharing. Jaye

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    molometer 5 years ago from United Kingdom

    Hello Jaye,

    How on earth did I miss this series of hubs. They are beautiful.

    I can't exactly remember the day I became invisible.

    But I do now it happened and I wondered why it had happened.

    I had got to that age? whatever that age is. Interesting to read everyone else experiences too. How shockingly similar we all are.

    Loved the video never knew Lennon had written such a song. I'm guessing it came from the New York years?

    Voted up and 4/5 buttons SHARING.


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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thank you, snakeslane...I'm glad you're reading and enjoying the entire series. As only one of 16 collaborators, I learned more than I gave. It was a wonderful project, and I hope THE JOURNEY continues to gain readers to infinity.

    The earlier people give thought to how they want to feel during their "golden years", the more likely they are to experience good health and vitality, barring accidents or illnesses over which they have no control through lifestyle choices. Even in the 40s and 50s, giving up those things that are proven bad for human health and beginning a healthy regimen pays terrific dividends.

    Glad you stopped by.....Jaye

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    Verlie Burroughs 5 years ago from Canada

    Wow, JayeWisdom, you ask a tough question, but one we all need to look at. Reminds me of a Paul Simon song: 'Some folks lives roll easy, some never roll at all...' It seems to me the easier our health and lives 'roll' when we are young, the easier it is to take it for granted. Age is the great equalizer. In the end you just have to go with what you've got. I am enjoying 'The Journey', an inspiring and thought provoking read when all the responses are viewed this way, together on the page. Thank you for your great work and inspiring message. Regards, snakeslane

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thanks, billybuc....I'm glad you're enjoying the series. That's one of my favorite photos of Mom because it perfectly captures the joy she found in life even as she aged. She's my role model for growing older.


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    Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

    A lovely addition to this series; I loved the picture of you mom making a snowball....classic!

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Hi, Jools....I'm so glad you're reading all of the series. There's much to be learned from all 16 chapters. It's good that you're taking care of yourself in your early 50s, which is young from my vantage point : ) You will be so glad you did as you get older. Also, you're likely to find your wisdom growing "sharper" as the years go by. I suppose it's the bonus (or trade-off, depending on how you look at it) for some of the physical stamina we lose in time.

    Thanks for stopping by to read Chapter 4.


  • Jools99 profile image

    Jools99 5 years ago from North-East UK

    Jaye, great hub. I have read almost all of the instalments, missing them only due to other 'busyness' going on in my life. I liked your question very much. Iam 50 next year and still struggling to be healthier even though I know, in the long run, it will benefit me. I think my wisdom is a bit dulled!

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thank you, Audrey, for reading this chapter. I'm glad you're reading the entire series, which I compare to an education for aging well. I learned a great deal from my 15 collaborators' writings and feel so fortunate to have been a part of The Journey.


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    Audrey Howitt 5 years ago from California

    I am so enjoying this series! Thank you and thank you Arb for putting this idea into motion--

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thank you, Carlley. I doubt many people would actually want to "go back", but most wish to pass on what they've learned to those who come after us. I hope you'll use the links to read the entire series, which is like reading a book on the art of aging well.


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    CarlySullens 5 years ago from St. Louis, Missouri

    This is a wonderful tribute to the journey of being human. So wise and beautiful put. If I had a chance to go back... hmm... not sure that I would.

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    vocalcoach...Thank you for your kind words. You definitely don't look your age! I'm so glad The Journey resonated with you and am pleased you'll read all the chapters. The series holds a wealth of information about growing older in a good way.

    sligobay...I feel just as you do. This project has been a wonderful experience. I'm so thankful to have played a part in it, and I'm sad to see it end. I only hope the entire series will continue to be read on HP and that everyone in our group will stay in touch with each other. Take care.


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    sligobay 5 years ago from east of the equator

    As I lay awake waiting for Arb's final chapter of the Journey, I feel the joy of satisfaction in the Journey's completion and a malaise of losing the anticipation of another chapter. 'tis a bittersweet moment in my life.

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    Audrey Hunt 5 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

    I keep forgetting that I'm old :) I may not look it, but I'm in my 70's. I needed this article so very much and am so grateful to you Jaye and all of the wonderful collaborators for this inspiring work.

    I will be reading all of the other chapters in this series. And your poem is brilliant. Thank you for bringing light and knowledge to those of us in our golden years. You are tremendous!

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thanks, Moonlake. I'm glad you enjoyed this chapter and hope you are following the entire series, which will be completed this week. There is a wealth of wisdom and information to be found in my 15 writer-colleagues who contributed to this project. Each has a separate chapter/hub, and each one is worthy of reading. I consider the series and "education in the best way to grow older." Hope you will share with your followers. This series, the brainchild of HP writer "arb", deserves a wide readership.

  • moonlake profile image

    moonlake 5 years ago from America

    Great.....Well done hub enjoyed reading it. Voted Up

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thanks, Dr. BJ....I must add that old saying to my collection. It is certainly true (as are most adages, which is why they become "old" sayings). Jaye

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    drbj and sherry 5 years ago from south Florida

    Your poetry is lovely and profound, Jaye, as well as meaningful. It reminds me of an old Pennaylvania Dutch saying I once read: 'We get too soon oldt, and too late schmart?' True!

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thank you so much, Deborah. Good health choices are so important in how we grow older. I wish I'd made them earlier in life, but "better late than never." Thanks for sharing. JAYE

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    Deborah Brooks Langford 5 years ago from Brownsville,TX

    wow love your hub. I am right there with you... I am 61 now.. and I fight every day to keep going I refuse to stop.. I agree with you.. I try to tell my sister USE IT OR LOSE IT.. I am sharing on Facebook


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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thank you, Bobbi....It is a shame that the wisdom acquired through years of living and learning from mistakes isn't appreciated by many in this throw-away society.

    Taking part in this collaborative series and reading the answers of my writer-colleagues to the intriguing questions posed in each chapter has shown me that most of us enjoy where we are now and wouldn't go back to youth, even if we could!

    Thanks for stopping by and commenting. I hope you'll follow the links and read the entire series. Chapter 14 was published today, and the series will end July 24 with Chapter 16. It's been quite a "journey."


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    BobbiRant 5 years ago from New York

    Wonderful hub! I never have the desire to go back to being the dumb young thing I once was. I love older people, so full of wisdom if only our McDonald society took more time to soak in that wisdom. I love this hub!

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thank you, silvergenes, for your kind words. I wanted to use the photos of my mom, not only as illustrations of concepts, but also because she's my role model for growing older. When people speak of her today, nearly four years after her death, they invariably mention her radiant smile, ability to find joy in the little things of life, musical talent that she enjoyed sharing almost to the end, etc. I hope similar things can be said of me after I'm gone.

    I feel very grateful and honored to work with you and the 14 other oh-so-talented writers of this series. As I read each new chapter, I'm receiving much more from the project than I put into it. I've been calling it my "education for how to grow older successfully."

    I think you're right about love being the key to it all. Isn't that great?


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    SilverGenes 5 years ago

    Jaye, your hub is so beautiful - from the poem and pictures of your mom to your words about love in all its forms. Perhaps love really is the key to everything. I am inspired by your courage and truly honoured to be working on this project with you.

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thanks tammyswallow....The idea was the inspiration of Hubber "arb", who is one of the 16 HP writers who collaborated on this series. If you use the links at the bottom of this chapter, you can go back to the beginning and work your way through those already published. All will be on HP by the end of July. I've learned so much from everyone who took part, and feel I've gained new insight into growing older.


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    Tammy 5 years ago from North Carolina

    This is such a fabulous series and idea. This is the first installment I have seen in this series. Your writing and poetry is quite prolific. I look forward to reading all the installments. I wish there was a creative button to click.

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thanks, CJS....The quote you mentioned is one that a friend of mine cross-stitched on fabric and gave to me framed when I was about 40. At the time, I thought it was amusing (still living in that "invincibility" realm, wasn't I?) I have it hanging on a wall in my house now, and every time I see it I wish I'd paid it more heed at the time!

    You are so right--preventive measures taken earlier in life are so much better than trying to regain something taken for granted and not protected. Perhaps younger readers of this series will learn from our experiences and put that knowledge to use sooner rather than later. That is my hope.

    I've enjoyed working with you and the others on The Journey, and I'm still reaping benefits as I read each successive chapter.


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    CJ Sledgehammer 5 years ago

    Dear Jaye:

    You asked a very pertinent question and received some very important feedback. It is interesting to see how people respond to the questions of health as they age. Some address these issues and make the necessary changes, while many do not.

    I cannot remember the name of the radio personality who said it, but he said, "If I knew I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of myself while I was young." His comment got me to thinking that it is wise to practice preventative measures early on, instead of seeking a cure later on.

    You have created a very fine hub here, Jaye, something that we all can be proud of. It was a pleasure working with you and being involved in such a marvelous endeavor.

    Best wishes and be well - C.J. Sledgehammer

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    TimeTraveler....Thanks for the read and your comments. Of course, there are some physical and mental conditions that are beyond repair, but perhaps "playing the hand you're dealt" means more than mere acceptance, although that is required for peace of mind with serious irreversible health problems.

    Some conditions can be treated even if they can't be cured, and others might be improved to some extent by a holistic approach to overall good health. While this might not work for everyone, I think it's worth a try when one has nothing to lose, but might, just might, have something--even something small--to gain. No "gain" is insignificant in those circumstances.


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    Sondra Rochelle 5 years ago from USA

    This was a great question, and one we should all give thought to. Personally, I think many conditions are not reversible...we can't replace lost body parts or fix damaged lungs, etc. I think all we can do is play the hand we've been dealt and do the best we can with it.

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thank you, Tom. I'm glad you enjoyed the chapter. Working on this collaborative series has been a wonderful experience, as I'm sure you will agree. Everyone involved in the project is talented, creative and caring, and each succeeding chapter of The Journey provides new insights. I look forward to reading your Chapter 7.

    It probably seems a bit presumptuous to incorporate the word "wisdom" into my HP writing name, but my profile explains my reason for doing so. Hopefully, I'm gaining wisdom as I go!


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    Tom Cornett 5 years ago from Ohio

    You did such a fine job on this. I listened to the beautiful song as I read the comments. HubPages is filled with many talented, creative and caring people from all walks of life. I like your name,"JayeWisdom"...very fitting. :o)

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Hi, marcoujor.....Thanks for your positive feedback. It's good to have acknowledgement from a healthcare professional that activities and attitudes described in this chapter can improve one's quality of life, even when there are physical challenges.

    I hope you're following the entire series. (Chapters 5 and 6 were published Monday and today.) Each morning I head for my computer with a cup of coffee to read what my fellow collaborators wrote about the day's topic. I'm very impressed with their insight and honored to be associated with such a stellar group of individuals/writers.

    I'm glad you enjoyed the photos of my late mother and Puppy Girl. They shared a very special bond, and I learned from watching them together how much joy a pet can give an older person. As my own years increase, I learn that lesson anew each day!


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    Maria Jordan 5 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

    Hi Jaye,

    You did a fabulous job with your installment of this fascinating series.

    As a nurse, I must say that the consistent threads I heard about moderation, moving (especially water therapy and walking), balance and joyfulness are so very instrumental in living quality lives, no matter what chronic issues we may encounter along the way.

    I agree this is a series that needs to read once and then a few more times to gather the countless pearls of wisdom strewn throughout.

    Your Momma and Puppy Girl are precious and inspirational. Thank you for sharing them with us.

    Voted UP & UABI. Hugs, Maria

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thank you so much, Epi, for your kind words. I'm glad you read this chapter of The Journey: A Look at Aging, and hope you are following the entire series. I'm learning so much from the other writers who collaborated on this project. There is so much insight among the varied responses to each question.

    You are barely at the midway point of your journey. With 15 years on you, if I'd had only 54 candles on the cake for my recent birthday, I'd not have asked for another gift! lol That age seems quite young to me. The 50s are a great decade, so enjoy!


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    epigramman 5 years ago

    ...well this is life affirming writing Jaye - you are to me , what I would call a writer's writer, and I am on this journey myself at the age of 54 with so many loose ends and unfulfilled dreams, hopes and desires still ahead of me waiting to be answered. I love the way you make me think and feel - I was so moved and touched by your sincere words at Maria's interview too.

    Leaving your hub inspired, as always, thank you for provoking your readers into further debate - that is the mark of a world class writer - and that world class writer is you - sending you warm wishes and good energy from lake erie time ontario canada 11:00am

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Hi, fpher48....Thanks for the "test" run, and I'll check for your email. I've been out of pocket for a few hours. Jaye

    phdast7...I reversed the comments order so it's easier to see the latest one(s) without scrolling down to the bottom of the screen. Is that lazy, or what?

    Daugher of Maat...It is a great idea, but one for which I cannot take credit. The idea for this collaborative series on aging was the inspiration of Hubber "arb", whose Chapter 16 will close it. I hope you will read the previous ones, catch the next publication on Monday and read all through the 16th. And I know the benefits of eating lots of vegetables, fruits, nuts and whole grains, for they are the mainstays of my own diet, plus I take vitamin and mineral supplements. This regime does not keep the wrinkles at bay (smile), but my digestion is excellent and I can't remember the last time I had a cold.

    Vinaya....Thank you so much for reading and leaving feedback. I enjoyed your hub about lavender and plan to read more of your work.


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    Vinaya Ghimire 5 years ago from Nepal

    Wonderful perspective on the reality of live. I loved your point of view and the poem.

    PS: Thanks for commenting on my lavender hub.

  • Daughter Of Maat profile image

    Melissa Flagg OSC 5 years ago from Rural Central Florida

    What a fantastic idea! I absolutely loved the poem! I know there's quite a bit of evidence that suggests many of the side effect of aging can be reversed with a whole foods plant based diet, and plenty of vitamin C. Cardiovascular disease most notably.

    I'm going to have to play catch up now! This is just a wonderful idea! I can't wait for the next chapter!

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    Theresa Ast 5 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

    Hello fpherj48 - Even though it is not my hub, I just noticed your comment. Jay has the comments running the opposite direction, so 42 hours ago was the first comment and th last comment before you was 22 hours ago. Either way, thanks for stopping back by our collaborative effort. Hope you are having a great weekend.

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    Paula 5 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    peek-a-boo...Tis I, again...actually here doing a "test" run.....I see the last post was 42 hrs. ago. Strange, very strange. be sure to check for my email.....This is really a GREAT hub and a fabulous idea!

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Vincent Moore -- When I first began planning my chapter hub, I knew I would include at least one photo of my mother, but chose two. One illustrates her sense of playfulness and joy of life (the snowball snap); the other shows the broad smile that characterized her personality and is mentioned by all who knew her. I was truly blessed to spend Mom’s last years with her. She was a special lady. Even toward the end of her life, as an invalid, she retained her smile and sweet nature—no complaints, only thankfulness for even the little things. She set an example I try never to forget.

    Those people who enter the senior years without any serious health issues are ahead in the game. Careful maintenance is always preferable and easier than “repair”—whether for an intricate engine or the complex human body.

    For everyone else, coping with health problems—whether genetic in origin, the result of exposure to toxins, accidents and other mishaps, or resulting from decades of excesses or benign neglect—there are, hopefully, options. Depending on the severity of the issues, as well as the individual’s beliefs, there are choices to be made. Many people opt for the most advanced medical care available, while others choose natural methods of halting disease or even regaining lost ground. The approach to wellness should be one with which the individual feels comfortable, else he or she won’t stick with it long enough to obtain success.

    There are no absolutes where health is concerned. As you said, we're all different and respond in different ways. We hope for the best (whichever approach is chosen), and it may work. Then again, it may not. When a negative (even catastrophic) situation changes into a positive one, it should be considered a gift…a bonus. Even small gains can make life easier in some instances. That is why I strongly believe we should not give up in defeat when faced with health challenges.

    I think you’re correct in supposing that the average person goes “overboard” in some or many areas during youth, and the sense of invincibility that prompts too much risk-taking may extend far beyond the 20s and 30s…even into the 50s. The individuals who, like you, practiced moderation (mostly) and lived an athletic, disciplined lifestyle are more likely to fare better in the good health sweepstakes. A good gene pool doesn’t hurt, either!

    I’m glad you liked the poem and music video…happy they made you smile as you pondered the thought of “what if?” I am deeply honored to be a part of this amazing collaboration with such talented cohorts as you and 14 other writers with so much to share. I look forward to reading the remaining chapters and absorbing the treasures contained therein. Hugs back to you, Vincent.

    sligobay -- It's been a wonderful week, hasn't it, as we launched THE JOURNEY with the first four chapters. I feel so grateful to be a part of this collective adventure. Now we must hope that readers will share the wealth of wisdom contained within all 16 chapters and, with any luck, our "Look at Aging" will go viral!

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    sligobay 5 years ago from east of the equator

    ...and so we bid adieu to the first week of publication of the "sweet sixteen". There is a ransom of experience and wisdom added to the content of the world's storehouse of knowledge. With grateful acknowledgement to the efforts of all, I am truly humbled.

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    Vincent Moore 5 years ago

    Jaye as they would say in Hollywood/maybe even Bolllywood. "What a follow up act" to Chapter 3. You open the flood gates of knowledge and keen observations about health issues for all that cope with some form of it as we age. I loved your opener discussing our birth and how we wailed at the world for attention. Then a snapshot of your lovely mother in her 70's something lining up for a snowball toss, was it you she was aiming at? ha ha.

    Any one of us who can grow old with our parents in my opinion is a miracle and a combine blessing. I agree with your quote "Good health and a positive attitude--keys to quality of life in later years" No doubt. However I've always maintained it's not the quantity of life we strive for, but the quality of it. I have with reckless abandon did much throughout my life to shorten it, however due to my everyday involvement in sports, I was able to burn off the bad I may have done to my body the days and or nights before.

    There is such a varied cross section of responses and comments about staying healthy, eating and drinking the rights foods, moderation, no excesses. Yet I don't think for a minute that anyone of us here did not go overboard in these departments at some points in our lives? Life to me is a crap shoot, some of us are luckier than others. Many people stress "Good Genes" I've always wondered about that. As cited by one author here about a lady living to 100 smoking and drinking whiskey every day of her life. What does that tell us? that we should follow her example. I believe many of us could and do just that and many of us just simply can't and won't survive it.

    I have lived my life mostly in moderation and even that was questionable at times, I've arrived to be 63 going on 64 in November and have a few sore joints. Have never been hospitalized, never on medication and only visit a doctor for a yearly checkup. Am I lucky, do I have good genes or is it due to the lifestyle I lived? My opinion is that most of it is pure luck. I believe because of all our uniqueness, not one of us being the same, nobody knows but our maker how our health and longevity is going to turn out. I am thankful to have reached this chapter of my journey and look forward to smoking a Monty Cristo. drinking a glass of cognac and pinching some beautiful young woman's behind on my 100th.

    You put together an amazing hub here Jaye and I am very proud and honored to be reading it with all the other fine authors here. Our collaborative efforts are amazing to say the least,the talent here is brilliant and stimulating. I look forward to reading the rest of them as they get published.

    Your poem and music video I read and listened to and simply sat back and smiled with delight."What If we could all be again? what a wonderful thought. Hugs to you sweet lady.

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    moviemaster -- Thanks for the vote. I've been reading and re-reading the material in this series (the previous three chapters and the answers to my question in this one), and each reading produces some new priceless nugget. THE JOURNEY reminds me of one of my favorite movies. Its engrossing story and superb acting enthralled me so much that I failed to notice the marvelous musical score until my third viewing!

    Nellieanna -- Your comments are like complete essays, dear friend, and I do so enjoy reading them. Thank you for the lovely compliments. I aspire to be as pleasant and congenial as Mom, but know I often fall short. Her good nature was inherent; I have to work at mine a bit....I do feel lucky to have my Puppy Girl, who brings me much joy. If I tend to spoil her, it's only what she deserves for enriching my life over the past 7 1/2 years and counting.

    I love your anecdote about learning to drive a car at 40 and gradually extending your world by driving "...just one more 100 miles." That's a perfect analogy for this journey of life we're all traveling, especially when you factor in some heavy rains and low visibility! Borrowing that theme, we may sometimes feel as though we're driving blind through a torrential storm, but by keeping our eyes focused on the highway line (or whatever keeps us headed in the right direction), we manage to get past the deluge and into the sunshine again. Just as even the worst storm eventually ends, so does the turbulence we encounter in places along our life pathway. And...aren't the rainbows that follow quite beautiful?


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    Nellieanna Hay 5 years ago from TEXAS

    Jaye - I'm awed, inspired and thrilled by your finished work! It's just beautiful to look at and to listen to! I love the pictures of you and your mother - she does look feisty! She's intent in the snowball pic but still looks as pleasant as can be! And Puppy Girl is adorable! How good that you have her.

    Each answer to your important question gives me food for thought and a sense of the writer. It's lovely to have this whole in which to better know the parts! Thank you, Alan!

    Your choice of music was inspired, and so was your lovely poem! Those poems that just emerge from within are usually the most lovely and meaningful. Yours reminds me of a favorite song which once brought tears to my eyes for the girl I'd been with moonlight in her eyes, sung by Bobby Darin's "Once Upon A Time". I was to learn that the girl was/is still alive and well, and the rest is history! The music in the song is gorgeous and the lyrics are heartrending:

    Once upon a time

    A girl with moonlight in her eyes

    Put her hand in mine,

    And said she loved me so...

    But that was once upon a time...

    Very long ago.

    Once upon a hill

    We sat beneath a willow tree

    Counting all the stars

    And waiting for the dawn

    But that was once upon a time,

    Now the tree is gone.

    How the breeze ruffled through her hair

    How we always laughed

    As though tomorrow wasn't there...

    We were young

    And didn't have a care

    Where did it go?

    Once upon a time

    the world was sweeter than we knew

    Everything was ours

    How happy we were then

    But somehow once upon a time

    Never comes again....

    But since then, I've learned that it does come again - each day, if one lets it, and each time we let love in, once upon a time becomes 'right then' and going on!

    It was when I was 40 thatI learned to drive. Monocular eyesight since birth had prevented it, among other restraints. But circumstances required that I learn so I did. It was like a whole new world, though my trips in my little '72 VW bug were just local & vicinity for the first year or so. "Local" included some challenging countryside, though, so it expanded my driving education beyond the few times at the wheel with the other driving ed. class members at the local High School! One trip was a little longer, to take my neighbor (who still didn't drive) to see her folks in a town 100 mi. away. Then I took on a 1000+ mile journey home to Texas, - alone, with my VW crammed with my stuff, - moving HOME. Parts of the trip involved fierce traffic in heavy downpours and the Interstate full of 18-wheelers spraying water all over my windshield! No matter what eyesight I'd have had - the visibility was almost nil! But I just kept telling myself it was just 100 miles - then another 100 - and another. How like LIFE's journey that is! One step, one mile, one day - one moment lived at a time! We don't have to tackle it all at once! These next moments adding up to 40 have been magical - and more awaits!

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    Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom

    Hi Jaye, this is a wonderful, inspiring and interesting hub - so much to absorb I need to come back and read again....

    I absolutely loved your poem!

    voting up

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    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    girishpuri -- Thank you so much for your vote and insightful comments. I already know from reading your hubs that you ascribe to a positive attitude, which is essential to all-round health and happiness. I hope you keep following the series with Chapter 5, to be published Monday.

    sligobay -- Thank YOU, my friend. While I must admit to some days of "Why me, Lord?" pity parties, especially in the beginning, my physical abilities have improved and--who knows? I may someday dance again! These days I focus on what I can do, rather than what I can't.

    I'm so sorry that you lost your brother and friends to alcoholism, but you should be justly proud of your 12 years sobriety. You earned all the benefits of your monumental achievement. I'm glad the suggestions in this series are encouraging you toward better health. "One day at a time" works in many areas of life.

    tillsontitan -- Thanks for your vote and welcome response. The photo of my mom playing in the snow was taken when she was about 77, I think. She had a wonderful spirit of playfulness and enjoyment of life. That is one of the few photos in which she doesn't have a big smile, but I think she was concentrating on getting that snowball just right!

    I haven't written much poetry, but the brief poem I included in this chapter just popped out of my mind in about five minutes one day years ago. My subconscious must have been working on it....It seemed to fit here.

    Kathleen -- Thanks for your congrats. I'm so glad the poem spoke to you. Haven't we all wondered "what if?" during our lives?

    Fennelseed -- Thanks for reading and offering your "many cents worth." I hope you catch up on the previous chapters and follow the series to its end.

    You may have thought yourself "boring" by not indulging in destructive excess in the past, but you may have saved yourself a lot of grief by your wiser choices. I hope exercise and physical therapy eliminate your neck pain and improve your posture to a new "normal." Glad you liked the poem. You're right--we often learn much by first doing things the wrong way. Tough lessons, but they tend to stick with us. I appreciate the vote and sharing.

    fpher48 -- Hello, dear friend. So glad to see you following along on our JOURNEY. Wasn't our fearless leader's vision for this series truly inspired? I'm learning so much from my fellow collaborators as the chapters unfold.

    We're all just taking one step at a time. It's the accumulation of steps that will see us through. (And you're so right--this body may be 69, but the inner Me still sees life through younger eyes.)

    mary615 -- Thanks for the vote and sharing. I'm so glad you're reading the previous chapters. With a pause in publishing for the weekend (the next one is due Monday), you should be able to catch up and continue with the series. I think you will find it worthwhile. Participating in this effort has been enjoyable, enlightening and humbling for me. I look forward to reading all the forthcoming chapters.

    phdast7 -- Thanks for your (always) insightful comments. I agree that the end result of this collaborative effort is the collective wisdom and experience shared. The combination of our similarities and differences adds the leavening.

    gerg -- Thanks, G. You shine a spotlight on the strength of this endeavor--the synergy wrought by a diverse group's contributions. Taking part in this series has been both an enjoyable and instructive experience for me. All the parts add up to an amazing whole.

    arb -- I'm so glad you conceived of this project, for it's been a joy and honor for me to participate. I'm awed by the extent of perception that informs all the answers, as well as the questions that were asked. The responses were obviously the result of introspection...none of them offered lightly.

    I like the way you characterize our collective endeavor as a tapestry. (Your poet/philosopher soul is showing.) It's the perfect description for this multi-colored cloth of ideas and feelings interwoven with earned wisdom.

    Thank you for giving me the opportunity to take part in this illustrious enterprise.

    curiad -- Thank you. I, too, am inspired by the collective spirit running through our series. I feel that I'm receiving so much more than I gave. Each set of questions and answers provokes thought and gives me motivation.

    shiningirisheyes -- Your mom is a marvelous example of the right way to live so as to enjoy one's 80s to the fullest. You are indeed fortunate to have her as a mother and friend, as well as a shining example of living in the NOW.

    A sense of humor, in my opinion, is imperative for keeping a positive attitude through the ups and downs of life. My own mom found reason to laugh often, and her laughter was contagious. I can still hear its joyful sound in my mind, though she's been gone from my presence nearly four years. I hope I keep laughing all the rest of my days!

    mjboomer -- Thanks for the applause, which rightfully belongs to our entire group of writers in this series on Aging. I'm so glad you're following along and hope you find much that is helpful as the chapters continue.

    Jackwms -- Isn't the scope and variety of perspective in the answers amazing? I'm learning so much from every chapter and honored to be a part of the whole.

  • Jackwms profile image

    Jackwms 5 years ago

    What a wonderful presentation. I am just amazed at the variations of responses that followed your question. Your videos and poetry are just great and very well placed. It continues to be my pleasure to be part of this collaboration.

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    Mike Elzner 5 years ago from Oregon

    Excellent Hub, your collaborative effort is applauded. It is after all the shared wisdom that provides us the light on our pathway. I look forward to the upcomming chapters........Thanks to All

  • shiningirisheyes profile image

    Shining Irish Eyes 5 years ago from Upstate, New York

    My Mother is my greatest example for aging properly. She keeps a wonderful sense of humor and worked full time (because she wanted to) until the young age of 80. She stays physically fit and even I have times when she tires me out.

    I am fortunate to have such a dear friend such as Mom.

    I found this insightful, helpful and oh so meaningful.

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    Mark G Weller 5 years ago from Lake Charles, LA.

    Jaye, you have done a wonderful job of sharing your thoughts, and sharing the 15 other authors thoughts. Each day, as this series continues I marvel at the spirit of it all!

  • arb profile image

    arb 5 years ago from oregon

    Chapter 4 is further evidence of a collective talent which refuses to yeild to anything except excellence. I especially enjoyed your poem, Jaye. You have contrived a wonderful addition to our series. As before, the collective answers simply attest to the individual character of a group worthy of answering difficult questions. I am continuously humbled by the extraordinary contributions. It is apparent that each one of you has reflected on these questions before answering. I marvel at the common thread which runs throughout this tapestry.

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    Gerg 5 years ago from California

    Incredible job, Jaye - you really inspired some great answers, and added much with your own abundance of wisdom and experience. It's inspiring that even in the reflection in the comments section we're all feeling the synergistic value of each other's perspective.

    Huge kudos - nicely done!


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    Theresa Ast 5 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

    Great Hub Jaye and you managed this in spite of a lot of extra things going on in your life. Once again I see similarities in the wisdom and common sense often achieved along with age, but there are distinctive differences, too. Many of the differences probably have to do with differing life circumstances, as well as unique personal philosophies. A great addition to our collaborative endeavor. :)

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    Mary Hyatt 5 years ago from Florida

    Oh dear, I'm having a hard time keeping up with you guys! I admire you for taking on this project, and this one was very interesting! I'll try and play catcup.

    I voted it UP, and will share.

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    Paula 5 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    This is positively a fabulous collaboration!! Kudos to arb for his "brainchild," and to all 16 hubbers who have contributed their words of wisdom! Aging is an attitude to a large degree....and our accumulation of damages, physical, mental, emotional...etc....have become our challenge! Maintaining the belief that "it's never too late" and "where there's a will, there's a way.....I would like to believe we will all do just fine! Up and day at a time, one foot in front of the other.

    Jaye.....your poem.......OUTSTANDING, girl! Yes, you're still a girl in your heart!!

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    Annie Fenn 5 years ago from Australia

    Very inspiring and interesting hub, glad I found this in time to follow along. Will go back and check out the previous hubs in this series then will look forward to each new hub. I was a fairly boring person most of my life so didn't indulge too much in things that can cause so much damage. What I am finding now however is my bad posture through the years has caught up with me and back and neck pain is becoming a problem. It is pretty hard to reverse what the body now knows as normal, but I am attempting too, through exercises and stretching certain muscles. Time will tell if I can reverse this problem. Just my two cents worth. Thank you for a great hub and concept. Your poem is just delightful - I think not for me also - wisdom is gained through traversing some of the wrong paths. Thank you again, JayeWisdom, my votes and best wishes to you and sharing!!!

  • Kathleen Cochran profile image

    Kathleen Cochran 5 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

    Jaye: Love the poem opening this hub. Beautiful. Another impressive chapter under our belts. Congratulations on your contribution to this effort.

  • tillsontitan profile image

    Mary Craig 5 years ago from New York

    Job well done Jaye! After all the work and collaboration, here's your hub and it's a very nice one too!

    I was looking at your Mom's photo at 70 and thought, "wow, that's cool" then I realized my husband will be 69 in December. We don't realize how old we really are!

    Your poem was so perfect, "the girl that once was me" boy, how many times do we think that?

    Voted up, useful, awesome and interesting.

  • sligobay profile image

    sligobay 5 years ago from east of the equator

    Thank you Jaye for an extraordinary installment in our collective Journey and Look at Aging. Sorry about the accident which limits your mobility. Thanks for the aquatics therapy suggestion.

    I love your poem "What if..." and its conclusion.

    The collective wisdom seems to be that change in unhealthy behavior to healthy behavior will improve if not reverse the damage we have done to ourselves. I agree, though my answer does not reflect that. My response seems fatalistic as I read it here but we exchanged correspondence which was more hopeful. I would like to discuss that here, if I may.

    Gerg's response preceded mine and spoke of alcoholism and twelve step programs. I have spent 27 years trying to change my patterns of alcohol abuse and have achieved 12 continuous years of sobriety, thank God. I have buried a brother and many younger friends who died as a result of alcoholism. My efforts have averted a host of potential consequences. Tobacco addiction has had its consequence but was the least of my problems, until now, with COPD. I continue on my path toward better health. The replies of the other collaborating authors have helped to guide me.

    Your article, Jaye, has cleared the bar with room to spare. Thank you.

  • girishpuri profile image

    Girish puri 5 years ago from NCR , INDIA

    An inspiring hub, which definitely motivate for good health and positive attitude, voted up

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Thanks so much for stopping by, eHealer. I appreciate your kind remarks, but I can't claim credit for much of this hub because it's a collaborative project with 15 other talented writers.

    I do hope you'll read the other chapters in the series. You can back up to Chapter 3 (which was published yesterday) by clicking on the PREVIOUS link at the bottom of this hub. You can use the PREVIOUS link on Chapter 3 to visit Chapter 2, and on that one to Chapter 1. There's so much of value in each one, and the full series will have 16 chapter hubs.

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    Deborah 5 years ago from Las Vegas

    Beautiful hub with so much meaning. You are so creative, thanks for the inspiration.