Welcome Fall with Fall Prevention

No, we can’t change the calendar, but on the first day of autumn (Wednesday, September 23) you can help raise fall prevention awareness. The Ohio Department of Aging is encouraging people to walk at least a mile tomorrow (or anytime in September) and post a selfie. Information about how to find groups walking and other details can be found at http://aging.ohio.gov/steadyu/.

There was also a good article about this in today’s Columbus Dispatch in the Metro Section, “Fall draws attention to risks of falling.” This paragraph got my attention: “An older Ohioan falls every two minutes, resulting in an injury every 5 minutes, 6 ER visits and one hospitalization an hour and 3 deaths every day.” What to do? First, don’t let fear of falling limit your activity. That actually leads to decreased mobility and increased likelihood of falling. 15-30 minutes of physical activity per day is the best to improve strength and balance and reduce the risk of falling.

Check with your local YMCA and other Silver Sneaker programs for balance and fitness classes. And check out the Steady U website listed above for more suggestions on how to prevent falls this fall.

I know this is a bit different topic than I usually write about, but I have a couple of personal interests in this. I am dealing with balance issues caused by peripheral neuropathy for one, and I have another birthday on the horizon which makes issues of aging more relevant every year. Also my wife, Diana, is a fitness coach and is encouraging her clients to walk tomorrow also. Just for fun, go to her Active Healthy Lifestyles page on Facebook and post a picture letting us know that you walked to help raise awareness. It’ll do us all good.

Memories and Prayers

A year ago this week I posted a prayer for my 50th high school class reunion. Of the 122 posts on my blog in 4 years, it continues to be the most read piece by far. It is viewed multiple times weekly and almost every day, and I am pleased but curious why that is. I have some theories about that, but would love to hear from anyone who has read that post from September 24, 2014. Why did you click on it? What feedback do you have about it? Did it speak to your life situation or not, and if so what in particular did so?

And if you haven’t read it and would like to, please go to peacefullyharsh.com and leave a comment. Thanks.

Walls or Bridges?

“Something there is that doesn’t love a wall, that wants it down!” Robert Frost, “Mending Wall”

O God of unity, forgive our walls made of concertina wire. Forgive our walls of fear and hate, fortified with ideology and suspicion. Forgive our scarcity mentality that hoards life and refuses refuge to the homeless and hopeless. Remind us again that we are to treat the sojourner and alien in our midst as one of us because we are all one human family, that how we treat the least of our sisters and brothers is how we treat you.

The need is overwhelming, but your love oh God is boundless and unconditional. Renew our faith that all things are possible with you; swing wide the gates of our hearts and empower us with your Holy Spirit to build bridges of hope instead of ugly walls. Amen.