As part of my job I occasionally use an online “age calculator” to quickly verify someone’s exact age on a legal document. I recently had a birthday and it always takes me awhile to get used to being a year older, so the other day I put my birth date into the age calculator just to confirm to myself that yes, I am older now. The age calculator breaks down one’s age into years, months, weeks and days. I learned that I am, as of today, 21,571 days old. If I live to the average life expectancy of an American female, which is 81.3 years, I will have lived 29,675 days. This means, statistically speaking, that I have another 8104 days to live. Now, I may have less than that, due to illness or unforeseen circumstance, but barring that, it is likely I’ll have more, as the people in my family tend to live a long time. But knowing I have probably around 8100 days left in my life is a sobering thought. What will I do with those days?
Having been sick with what has seemed like the flu, from which I am still recovering, has also given me pause for thought. I had a severe case of the flu last spring, this one milder but still bad enough to interfere with my daily life to a large degree. I did not get a flu shot this fall, which I had intended to do, but it may not have helped with this, I don’t know. What I do know is that I could probably give more help to my immune system than I do. I had started working on getting better sleep until I got sick, and will get back to that soon. More exercise would be good, of course. But an area where I’ve really fallen short is in providing myself with good nutrition, and there’s no excuse for that. Over the past couple of years or so I’ve just been eating whatever would give me enough calories to keep me going, meaning lots of carbs. This started when I began having only myself to cook for, and I quickly got into “why bother?” mode. I rarely made myself an entire meal and picked up way too many snacks to munch on while working at my desk. As a vegetarian it is especially important for me to eat a wide variety of food, and I haven’t been doing that at all.
Because my job requires I spend long hours at my desk, I needed to think of a way to eat more nutritiously that wouldn’t require a lot of my time. When I was still eating meat a few years back I used a crockpot to save time, but stopped using it when I became a vegetarian, as I didn’t see how it would be a very helpful kitchen tool if I wasn’t using it to cook meat. However, not long ago I was intrigued by a book I ran across at the library called “The Vegan Slow Cooker” and decided using a crockpot again might be a great idea. I didn’t bring my old crockpot with me from Florida, so I bought two new ones, a small one for breakfasts and a larger one to make meals with leftovers, so I’m looking forward to putting them into heavy use very soon.
My point is, I don’t know exactly what I’m going to do with those 8100 days; there are plenty of things I’d like to do, of course, but doing the best I can to make sure whatever time I have left is quality time is paramount, so practicing healthier habits to help my immune system is key. So I guess I could call this a “life resolution” for my next 8100 days — starting now!