As I grow older, it takes me a bit longer to get up from a sitting position, my bones creak every so often and I even find myself making some funky noises with lots of movement. I get it I am not getting younger but I am making the effort to do what I can to maintain some good health habits. I always took things for granted, I have never had issues with weight or major health scares but I am intelligent enough to know that I have to take the necessary steps to prevent the disease that I can at least try and control. I have known family medical histories of hypertension and diabetes and I know that there are certain aspects of my lifestyle that can help prevent me developing these diseases and needing to get on medication. Diet and exercise are the modifiable factors that I have some control over. I have to watch what I eat, while also getting in as much exercise as my schedule will permit me to.
I turned forty last year and I am excited by what the next chapter in life has in store for me. I am on a journey of discovery, self improvement, and intentional living. What do all these buzz words even mean. I am just realizing that life can be what you want it to be. I am now realizing that I can live my life with purpose and not just survive, what this looks like is me asking myself important questions. What do I like, what makes me happy, what do I find enjoyable? Do you ever ask yourselves these questions and go with what your answers are. Do you let your answers guide the trajectory of your life. I feel that it is only recently that I have started asking myself such questions. I am now on a new path and I am excited by it all. I am trying to ensure that whatever I do these days actually brings me some sort of meaning. I have taken on my debt free journey where I aim to pay off my student loan debt and enjoy the freedom that will bring. This has also led me to the healthy eating and exercising path. Which now brings me to the main reason for my writing this blog post.
I am a nurse by profession and I also studied public health, so I am pretty versed on the role that health screening plays in identifying and preventing certain diseases. As a woman I have the risk of developing breast cancer and given great public health advancements I knew that breast cancer screening is encouraged after age forty. Despite this knowledge it took me a year to arrange my 40 year physical to request the mammogram through my physician. I am not sure how other States are but where I am and with my health insurance you have to be in the driving seat of your healthcare. By this I mean you have to be the one requesting certain things from your physician, including the yearly physical… you have to be proactive. I turned forty and its not like my Doctors office was going to call me to say hey you are forty you need your physical and you will need your mammogram, I had to be the one to take these steps myself. Its part of self responsibility I suppose. Despite knowing all this it took me a whole year and several months to get around to booking my physical. When I did get around to doing it I still had to request the mammogram. That was me taking control of my healthcare needs. I am glad I did because I have had to get a follow up ultrasound as well and I have also been advised to follow up with another mammogram and ultrasound in 6 months time. Apparently my breasts are dense (whatever that means) and there might be an area of concern that will need to be followed up in 6 months. Yikes right… shouldn’t I be requesting a biopsy….. if you know me you know that I am not usually one to panic…I have been praised for my calm demeanor and I will continue so and wait for the 6 months to be re screened. I am writing this post for my fellow women. Since my intentional living is now all about encouraging women to pro actively plan for their futures part of that is taking great care of yourselves to maintain good health and prevent and seek out treatment for certain disease. After reading this post I want you to self inventory yourselves.
When was the last time you saw your Doctor?
When was the last time you had blood work done?
If you are forty or over have you had your mammogram?
Do you know your family medical history?
Are you exercising regularly ?
Are you eating a balanced healthy diet?
Let your answers lead you to your best lives ever. I am just here to encourage you to take the small simple steps that can guide you to intentional living.
With Love and Gratitude
Dr Fatsani Dogani