Saturday, January 9, 2010

Why Fit Family For Life? Why should you subscribe?

I have the perfect life!  I met the love of my life, Bo, at 18 and married him at 21.  Together we have lived in St. Maarten (in the Caribbean for you non-island folks); Waterford, Ireland; Orlando, Florida; Tallahassee, Florida (maybe not as exciting, unless of course you are a Florida State Seminole fan... go Noles!); New Orleans, Louisiana; and currently reside in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.  We even have 2 dogs, one is a rescue mutt, and the other is a family-must-have, AKA golden retriever.  I not only have two beautiful blonde hair and blue eyed children, but I am blessed with both a boy, and a girl, and they are the "ideal" 25 months apart.  Fortunately for me, my parents instilled the value of education, and so I also have a B.S. (no pun intended) and an M.A., both in education.  Oh!  Did I mention my husband's a doctor!  Told you my life was perfect. :)

Well, almost perfect.  When  I was four, my sister, Robin, died of a rare genetic disease called Zellweger Syndrome at 4 months old.  Not many months after, my grandfather, Edward Sidewand, died of a heart-attack. My mom, Sheila Doerr, was 26 at the time of his death. Then things went pretty well from there for a little while.  My dearest and nearest grandma, Norma Sidewand, was diagnosed with breast cancer, faught it successfully, only to later have cancer return while she was trying to heal from a hip replacement (which resulted in an infection.)  Her battle was short, and she died on May 11th, 2002. While I was in the process of planning my wedding, my uncle, Doug Sidewand, was diagnosed with lung cancer.  Unfortunately he lost his fight on February 15, 2005 when he was just 49.  My biological father, Reid Driskell, died of heart-related complications due to his obesity in 2005.  Then, the harsh news came on Father's Day of 2007 that my Dad (some would call him my step dad; however, I would never refer to him as such), Randy Doerr, who I thought was untouchable, had metastatic pancreatic cancer.  He left this world at 58 years young, but not my heart, on June 6th, 2008, while I was 6 months pregnant with his grandson, Randy.  So, now my Mom is left with me, and only me.  She has borderline Type-II Diabetes, smoked for around 30 years (thankfully quit nearly a decade ago!), but has made a commitment to take better care of herself (praise God!).  I hope she stays true to her commitment, not only for me, but for her grandchildren.

Aside from my sister, the bleak reality is, all of these members of my family might still be here had they led healthier lifestyles.  My Grandma and Grandpa enjoyed good (or bad) beer and midnight snacks; my Uncle loved pizza and cigarettes, and I heard several wild stories about my Dad in his younger years.

We are in a frightening era where children are no longer outliving their parents.  That should not settle right with any of us.  Something has to change, and that change starts with you.  It's never too late to start making healthier choices.  Parents, it is your responsibility to teach your kids what exactly it means to be healthy.

So, that's why I am here.  It is my mission to live a healthy life, and to lead by example so that my children (including my students) may lead healthy lives, too.  I am here to share my stories, offer advice, motivation, and inspiration, in whatever form that may be.  Thank you for stopping by and let me know what it is you want and need.

But for now, get your running shoes on and take a step in the right direction, together, as a family!


  1. Ahh, your first journal entry brought tears to my eyes. Loved ones leaving us, regardless of circumstances is always difficult.

    I'm excited to follow your adventures..........since I usually end up mimic them! You've introduced to me the love of cooking, working out, sculpting my body, educational activities with my kiddos and now staying fit. Carry on woman! PS This is Darleen signed in as Doug.

  2. Geesh Darleen, you are fast! And how far you HAVE come! I was looking at some gorgeous pics of you from the island yesterday and realized just how fit you have really become! I'm proud of you! Keep it up! Thanks for stopping by. :)

  3. Habits - fit for life is maintaining good habits and getting rid of the others. Doug, my brother a.k.a. Nikky's Uncle, once said to me during his chemo treatments, "Gee Sheila, just think, for fun, we put smoke in our lungs." Doug died of lung cancer. Randy, a.k.a. Nikky's Dad,died of pancreatic cancer. Guess what the #1 cause of pancreatic cancer is? Yep...that's right, cigarettes. My father, had a heart attack and died one night. No real warnings of a looming, dooming heart condition. He smoked, enjoyed his beer and his fun food. All three of these men were in their 50's when they died. Everyone of those premature deaths were preventable. Cigarettes. Bad Habits. All 3 started smoking in their teens. Doug and Randy quite for about 10 years before their cancer on-set. My father never quit. My mom died of breast cancer. There are study's connecting breast cancer to cigarettes. My mom had quite smoking for about 10 years too. She started as a teen/young adult. Habits. Start our new generations with healthy habits. If you are already smoking, STOP. Be the example, be there for them later.

  4. Thanks so much for doing this Nikky!! Your first entry, of course, is moving and captivating and I look forward to more. The death of Dave's parents at the age of 60, with major contributors from habits,was a big wake up call. At our house, we have been trying to implement positive change and healthy habits slowly. We have never been as aggressive as we are at the start of 2010. I look forward to your blog motivating me to stay on track. Your awesome!!!

  5. Sheila (Mom!) and Jeanette, thank you so much for your posts. You gave me an idea for my next entry... coming soon! Thanks!