Family Health Month

Family Health
Be Present

August is Family Health Month, here in the VA. Family can mean a different things to different people, can’t it? I’ve heard people talk about their “work family” as well as their “family family.” How are you taking care of yourself so that you can be the best version of you for ALL of the families to which you belong?
We’ve all heard (a million times, it seems) about eating a healthy diet and making sure that you put food into your body that can help your body do the things that you want it to do. But do we do it often enough to make a positive difference? Many of us do, but I’m sure that there are others like myself who don’t always make the ‘best’ choices. We (I) make the easy choice rather than the best choice. No worries! Today is another chance to tip that equation back into your (our) favor. Let’s get it done.
Another way that we can help our families is for us to be truly ‘present’ when we’re together. How many of you sit at home on the couch with your family, tv is on some show that vaguely interests most of you at least some of the time, but everyone is buried in their smartphone, a book, or a magazine? Happens at my house nearly every night (truth be told, I’m usually the one playing games or reading on my phone!). By putting those items down and being ‘present’ in the situations, we show our family members that they are important to us. In turn, I’m sure you’ll see, they’ll put theirs down as well. The present is a gift that we can all share with each other, but only once. After that, it becomes the past, and we can’t exchange it for a new one. Strive to be present now.
What would an article from me be without mentioning exercise? One written by a surrogate, that’s what! So yes, be sure to try to incorporate exercise into your week, preferably three to four out of the seven days. Doesn’t need to be strenuous (although that’s great!), and doesn’t need to be for hours on end. Remember, though, movement is different from exercise.
As far as your family-family goes, what are some things that you can do together in this final month of Summer? Are there any day-trips that you’ve been putting off? What steps can you take to make them happen? Never too early to get back-to-school supplies/clothes lined up so that you can spend more time together during the transition back to school. Even simple events like a free local concert or going to a farmer’s market together or a movie on the green (Hartford and Quechee have these!) is a great way to enrich your family’s experience.

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