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06/30/2003 - Honor the temple, dude!
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We have all heard the age-old saying "worship your body like it's a temple," or something to that nature. I used to think that it was just another old saying that turned into bad a clich? over the years. But in reality, it is true. For myself, it has been especially true, considering my condition. But don't think that just because you're able-bodied that you can get away with eating junk food everyday and not getting the proper amount of sleep at night. This kind of punishment on your body will affect you in more ways than you can imagine.

I once had a caregiver who worked ninety hours a week, forty of which was with me and the other fifty with several other clients. His diet consisted of Burger King, Wendy's, pizza, cheap Mexican food and soda. He never drank water, saying that it always made him sick to his stomach. The funny thing was that he got sick almost every week. Whether it was a cold, or the flu, or a bad "stomach bug," this guy was a walking contagion. His body simply couldn't put up with the abuse on a daily basis. And who suffered in the process? Not only himself, but everyone he worked or lived with. I didn't want to have him around because I was constantly terrified of catching whatever he was carrying at the time. So I had to let him go. I can only imagine what his wife felt having to live with this guy.

If you don't take care of your body, it will affect every part of your life. Your work, your play, your family, everything will be affected one way or another. It's like a link in a chain. One leads to another leads to another, and so on. If you brake one of the links, the chain snaps and you have big problems.

Another example. I have known many people who have either substance abuse problems, or are alcoholics. One particular person who took care of me was a major alcoholic and was in complete denial of that fact. However it had reached the point where if he wasn't either drinking, or asleep, he was miserable. He hated himself and the world around him. At the same time, he had a wife and two small children that he loved very much. The fact of the matter was that he only started to drink after the birth of his first child. Then he gradually drank more and more, until his body, and mind, was completely dependant on the alcohol. Eventually, he lost everything that meant anything to him in his life, including his family.

We've heard many of these stories time and again, so I won't bore or depress you with another one. The point is, this person started to mistreat his body, his temple, and his whole world fell apart. So before you think it's okay to go out and party one time only, better think again. Because that one time could turn into multiple times. And each time that succeeds the next makes it all the easier to go out and party the next time. Suddenly it becomes a habit, not a "one-time" thing.

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