This morning my life changed forever. I took my first statin (cholesterol-lowering drug). At the age of only thirty-four, I consider myself to be healthy and in good shape. I exercise regularly (ok, compulsively!) and I eat a low-fat diet. And it was only two months ago that my doctor told me that I am as healthy as any thirty-something he knows. And so, you can imagine the shock when yesterday, that same doctor told me that I needed to go on cholesterol medication, most likely for the rest of my life. I sat glossy-eyed and tried to focus, thinking to myself, "Are you serious??? How can this be???"
There is a phrase that a golfer often uses when faced with a situation where he has the option to pull off the heroic shot (with high risk and high difficulty) or choose the easier shot (with low risk and low difficulty). Now adrenaline, testosterone, and a competitive nature will entice the golfer to go for the hard shot and make the birdie; but reason, logic, and percentages beg him to compromise with an easier shot for the chance to make a par. Choosing the latter is referred to as "taking your medicine." Although it doesn't feel good, it is almost always the best thing to do. I have used that phrase time and time again for myself and others while on the golf course, while never fully understanding its deeper meaning!
My pride, my stubbornness, and my competitive nature all conspire to convince me that if I just exercise more, cut down on my red meat consumption, and drown myself with grapefruit juice, I can beat my life threatening enemy, cholesterol! But in reality, that just isn't true. So this morning, tomorrow morning, and (hopefully) for thousands more, I will be "taking my medicine" and reminding myself that par is not a bad score.
National Review Children's Books
5 years ago