Natural health or National Health?


A lot of people ask, “Geez, what if you need a doctor?  Or, like, Emergency care or something?”   The answer will surprise you.

Firstly, I have needed a doctor or emergency care several times in my life.  Playing sports, feeling invulnerable and driving fast will sometimes do that to you.  I can’t remember a time when I got prompt service in the city.  When I cut one of my toes off in a motorcycle race at about ten in the morning, they sewed it back on that same day (barely) but at midnight!  I sat in VGH emergency for over twelve hours.

Almost had enough time to grow another one.

When I got run over by an outboard at 1:00 pm in the afternoon up here, I was in Campbell River hospital by 4:00, patched up and we caught the 6:30 pm ferry back home that same night.  NOT having thirty or forty others lined up ahead of you saves time.

But I don’t think the subject of health care begins at the hospital.  Frankly, I am beginning to think it is more likely to end there but that’s another blog.  I think health care begins at home.  And we eat right, exercise all day long and watch a lot of documentaries – and no TV.  That’s gotta be healthy, right?

And being outdoors gives us the tanned and ruddy complexion that ‘looks’ healthy at the very least.  We look damn good!  Well, Sal does, anyway.

I guess what I am saying is that health is not a major issue for us despite having the basic malfunctions of average 60+ year-olds.  We try to make it that way by thinking that way.  Of course, sometimes it is an issue and it has to be faced and I am sure our turns will come with more frequency as we age.  That’s life.  But Sal and I have chosen to face it when it comes, not to live in anticipation of it’s arrival.  That may just be a form of denial but I think healthy living is often  attitudinal and living with the right attitude, we think, is half the battle.

Having said all that ‘healthy’ stuff, we still go see the doctor every so often.  Dentists, too.  More and more the optometrist and, when I can afford it, the massage therapist.  It all helps to keep the old rig on the road.  But all that can be done by appointment and we simply make such appointments on ‘shopping days’.  So far, so good.

But life happens.  And so do heart attacks and other horrors.  Some of our local people have set a pretty high standard on how to deal with those unpleasant events.  They basically just ‘carry on’.  One fella had the equivalent of a bomb go off in his chest and, tho the convalescence has been slow, it has been evident and progressive.  He is still going like a train.  A slow train but chugging along, nevertheless.  Cancer, kidney malfunctions, weird diseases, major trauma……we get it all……….but usually the folks come back and keep on truckin’.  It is good to see.

And I can’t help but think that the circumstances that might otherwise finish most people off are kept at bay somewhat by living out here.  Each day just ‘feels’ healthier.  And I think it is.

I guess what I am saying is: instead of taking two Tylenol and calling your doctor in the morning, sometimes a weekend in the forest is what the doctor should have prescribed.

1 thought on “Natural health or National Health?

  1. Given your circumstances of living on an island with no resident doctor puts you in the same situation as 65% of folks living off the grid in Africa or elsewhere. With no local doctor ‘off-the-grid practitioners’ who do not want to go to town to seek medical attention in an emergency must get regular medical tests to avoid most of the surprises.


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