Wednesday, 4 April 2018

"Nine Lessons I learned from my Father"

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Funny how things go sometimes isn't it?  A client of mine mentioned this book to me (left), last fall during a conversation.  I liked the sounds of it,  so I saved it on my Amazon wish list for sometime down the road. 

 A few months later at Christmas, my kids had bought it for me (without me telling them it was on my list I might add)!!  

Last week leading into Easter weekend, for the first time all fall/winter, I caught a bug that's going around. My perfect streak had ended unfortunately (9-days later I still feel the remnants of it).  At least one positive out of being sick and not being able to work was that I had ample time to read some of my "non-work books".  

I finished off, "99 Stories of the game" by Wayne Gretzky (which I would highly recommend), and so I decided to crack open "Nine Lessons I learned from my Father" by Murray Howe next.  I knew I would enjoy it;  I love hockey, I love hockey history, and I love learning the "behind the scenes" aspects of players/former players lives that really give us the human perspective.  But I was not anticipating the power this book has had on me right from page 1. 

I'm 3/4 of the way through the book now (a "reading speed record" for me only 5-days later).  But I just can't get enough.  Honestly, you don't need to be a hockey fan to appreciate this book.  What makes that even more the case is, Murray Howe (the legend, Gordie Howe's youngest son) was the only, Howe male of the family to not play hockey professionally.  Murray is a doctor by trade.  So the entire book is written from the perspective of the youngest child, who although loved hockey and played when he was young, didn't make his name by doing what his Dad and brothers did.  That makes the book more special and pure in my opinion.  

The purpose of my post today, is because my wife and I are people who, enjoy helping others learn to lead healthy lifestyles, but mostly we just love when people feel good (be it for moments or longer).  The human element in what we do gives me a high that you just can't explain.  It's the interactions, the conversations, the stories, the laughs, etc... that make my job so special to me ...  more so than the amount of weight lost, or how fast someone can run.  

This book by, Dr. Murray Howe about his Dad is absolutely incredible. Maybe it's special to me because my friendship and bond with my Dad is very strong as well, or maybe it's because it makes the legend, Gordie Howe even more legendary because of WHO he was, as oppose to what he accomplished on the ice.  Here's an excerpt from the book to explain what I mean:

Just imagine for a minute, what our towns, cities, countries and world would be like, if this was the approach to life we all took.  Imagine the incredible feeling we could bring out in others if we were all treated this way by people we meet and interact with.  

Being truly healthy includes our relationships and goes well beyond fitness and nutrition.  I am so proud to say that my parents share this same view that the Howe's shared with the world. I have friends who work paycheck to paycheck (hell, so do we!), and then I have friends who are doctors and lawyers. Neither mean any less to me than the other.  It's the person themselves that is important to me. Not their title or how much money they have.  

On another note, Gordie Howe and his wife lived without prejudice or bias. They avoided events or places that left out certain types of people, or certain "classes" of people.  They were legendary in my mind not for what Gordie accomplished in his career, but as a human being we should all strive to be!  

We live in a world of stereotypes;  "You own a business, so you're rich", "You're a Doctor so you have it easy", "You have a minimum wage job so you're not as important as someone making more".    If overall health and well being is your goal in life, make sure you have the right mindset and approach to those you interact with;  be it for minutes or on a regular basis - we're all human and we all have our stories, talents, ups and downs.  

No one is more special than the next person.