You Can Thrive – Take Care of Yourself!

By on June 17, 2013

“Poppy, I’m sorry to tell you this,” said my doctor, “but our tests show you’re no longer considered glucose intolerant. You’re officially a diabetic. This means you need to pay attention to your diet. You absolutely must exercise, watch your stress, and get adequate rest.  And, by the way, watch your feet!”

I wasn’t quite sure what my feet had to do with anything, but in time I learned a lot more about nerve damage and other things I didn’t want to know about.  Slowly it sank in: out of three sisters, I was the one who inherited diabetes, the disease that afflicted both my grandmother and mother.

Driving home I replayed what I saw that morning in the doctor’s crammed waiting room. Glancing up from my two-year-old magazine I had watched yet another patient come in. Struggling to maneuver his wheelchair, the middle-aged man expertly backed himself into the only space available. What was left of his amputated lower leg stuck straight out—a silent warning of what can happen

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That could be me, I thought, unless I start taking care of myself.

Mulling over my sobering diagnosis, I knew I had to make some choices. If I wanted to stay alive as long as possible, I needed to say good-bye to my chocolate donut treats and upgrade my exercise from an occasional stroll to regular heart-pumping power walks. If I didn’t do what was needed, I could face some scary consequences. But it wasn’t only a matter of living a long healthy life and becoming a little old granny that weighed on me.

I want to be around so I can keep doing whatever God has for me. I don’t want to get aches and pains and struggle to breathe or walk because I won’t say “no” to myself. If it happens regardless of what I do, then I’ll trust God to give me the grace I’ll need. But even though it takes effort and self-discipline (not high up on my strengths list), I want to do my part. I want to treasure this amazing gift that He created.

Ignoring my health by ignoring the issues, or going on as I had, wasn’t an option. I needed to do more than think about what to do, I needed to do it.

We’ll continue this discussion in my next few blogs  – I’ll share what I do to take care of myself and what you can do too.

What do you need to do, or are doing, to take care of your health today? Would love to get your input in the comment section below. 



Originally posted on Inspiring Women to Thrive.

About Poppy Smith

Born in England to a non-believing family, Poppy grew up there and in Sri Lanka, Singapore and Kenya. She met her American husband in Nairobi and they soon moved to the United States. The adjustment to her new marriage and new country, combined with loneliness and the loss of all that was familiar, brought Poppy to a defining moment with God. The resulting change, from anger to acceptance, from fighting God to seeking Him, led her into a life-long love of Scripture and the One it reveals. Her website:

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You Can Thrive – Take Care of Yourself!