Part 1: Where Are You Going to Live When Your Body Gives Out?

Today I visited a Dialysis Center and watched so many (once vibrant) people being wheeled in and dropped off by medi-vans, helped in on walkers, or walking slowly by themselves or assisted by loved ones.  Three times a week they would be spending half of their day getting their blood purified on machines because their kidneys have failed. While there was an occasional smile, most seemed stoic, resigned to their fate, and devoid of energy.  The alternative however could be certain death.

High Blood Pressure Is Not Part of Aging

My sister and I were there with our step-mom.  So, I had more than just a casual interest.  My sister had just moved her up to Maryland this past weekend so that we could both look after her better.  Today was her first visit to the Maryland Dialysis Center and the three hours we’d expected turned into almost five hours.  We’d known for years that she had high blood pressure, but really didn’t know what that meant.  She was grown.  She took her medication and went on with her life.  Our attempts over the years to encourage her to change her southern diet and eat healthier were met with skepticism and resistance.  As fast as we’d throw out the salty staples of fat back, cracklins, and hambones, they’d reappear.  Even worse, the neighbors, friends, and church members would bring her a plate that contained many traditional yet salty foods.  And, after all, there were many people around her in her community in North Carolina with high blood pressure, so it was treated as part of aging, hereditary,  and no big deal.  Additionally there was no shortage of examples of people in their eighties, nineties, and even an occasional centenarian who were doing fine on the same diet that their parents and grandparents had been reared on.  She herself was approaching eighty-four so she’d obviously done a few things right.  Click to read Part 2:

Barbara Talley is a keynote speaker, author of six books, and trainer on value-based living themes.  She also offers Effective Communication, Diversity, Leadership, Time Management, and Goal Setting workshops.  Visit her at or contact her at 301-428-4831.  You may email her at

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