I always enjoy reading Jerome Burne’s articles on health topics, and his latest, Ten top tips to boost your disease free survival, reminded me of my father-in-law Roy who, having just celebrated his 86th birthday, is enjoying a new energised lease of life – and it’s all thanks to love! Surely that plays a vital part in ensuring good health too.
Roy lost his Vera, the land army girl he fell in love with when she was posted to Ely during WW2, in September 2009, and last year he met a new lady and they are now very close friends. I am so thrilled as she is an absolute delight and treasure who plans to spend her 80th birthday in Las Vegas next month! We think the world of her.
Roy’s smile stretches from ear to ear and he cannot pack enough into the day. Although he has some health problems – he is waiting for a new hip and is having a platelet transfusion next week for low platelets – Roy takes very good care of himself and tucks into porridge and blueberries for breakfast each day and always eats a healthy meals which he enjoys preparing himself; he is cooking salmon for my husband this evening. And, bless him, he has offered to cook our Sunday roast for Mother’s Day as we could not get into any local restaurants, he has bought a beautiful rib of beef.
During a recent stay in hospital, he pleaded with me not to let staff use the Liverpool Care Pathway plan, he wanted to walk out and look forward to spending more lovely days with his new companion. Of course, I gave my word.
Roy still has many interests, he runs a stall at the Waterside Antique Centre in Ely, he completes the Daily Mail crossword each day, and, up until the last year or so, he played percussion with Huntingdonshire Concert Band; he has organised a large group of us to go and support their swing concert next week and he will be tapping away all night to his favourite tunes. We even take him out to the cinema with us now and he is the oldest in the audience at the Arts Picturehouse.
While Pope Benedict XVI has stepped down due to ill health, Roy cannot pack enough into the day, and I keep reminding him of his good fortune, compared to the Pope’s decline in health after his virtuous life. He seems 10 years younger, and I am convinced that the warm glow which love makes you feel has a part to play in this and is boosting his immune system.
Now if the Pope found someone special to love, would that make a difference to his health too?