How Much Do You Value Health?


Yesterday I watched “Extraordinary Measures”. One great movie starring Harrison Ford and Brendan Fraser. It’s about a parent (Fraser) with two kids having a genetic disease called Pompe. It’s something that involves deficiency in producing the enzyme that burns glycogen in the blood, which causes some of the body organs to enlarge, including the lungs. Difficulty in breathing is among other nasty symptoms of this disease. Desperate of finding any cure to the disease, Fraser reads about a scientist (Ford) in another state who has reached some promising results in finding a cure. Fraser contacts him and learns that he has a lot to offer but has a very little financing from the university he works for. Desperate to save his kids’ lives by any means, he thinks of founding a company with the scientist with the aim of producing this medicine onto a larger scale.

Measurement of heath

I don’t want to go into further details about the movie, I don’t want to spoil it for a potential viewer, I also didn’t come here to narrate it. I am here for something much more important than this: how much do you value “health”? Notice that I didn’t say “your health” because this is a very elastic phrase. For your health might not be the only “health” you care about. What about your children, your wife, or your parents? What about a very dear person to you, may be a friend, or a lover? That’s why I opted to use “health” in it’s broadest sense, as a mere value, or shall we say: a gift from God.

Once again, how much do you value health? first of all let’s define “value”. What’s a value? is it money? is it gold? is it anything you can touch at the first place? what about time? isn’t time in itself a value? sometimes a second can be life or death for somebody. How much does this second value?

I think “value” is anything you are willing to sacrifice in return for something that “deserves” this value. When you spend huge amounts of time studying for your masters, the value that you get in return for this time – among other sacrifices of course – sure does deserve it. But let’s not divert from our main issue. I’ll tell you what the father sacrificed in return for his kids’ health. First, he quit his job on the verge of a 40% salary increase, then he sold his house and most of his possessions, and moved to a smaller house near the scientist’s place to start making the firm. He struggled through a lot of bureaucracy and people caring for nothing more than a rising profits curve (the partners who joined the firm).

Let’s leave the father and take a closer look at one of the kids. She was on a wheel chair. She’s been riding it since she started “walking”, actually, she never walked. She had a pipe pinned to her neck, connected to a device that helps her breathe. In several scenes of the movie, and to show how her state is deteriorating, we see her throwing a bowling ball with great difficulty, a difficulty that keeps growing along the scenes till we see her unable to throw a pebble into a pond.

Please tell me how much you are willing to sacrifice just not to be or none of your beloved be in the poor girl’s place, even for a moment? I will tell you: everything! You’ll be willing to sacrifice all your money, all your time, and all your assets. Even more, you’ll give up all your ego and self esteem, you’ll be seeking forgiveness from anybody you hurt, even as a result of a misunderstanding.

Why am I writing this post? Actually I am eager to hear your comments, I want to see each and every one’s view of his own health and how much he or she values it, how much he or she is willing to sacrifice in order to keep it.

Last but definitely not least, this is just one of the countless gifts granted from the Lord. Can’t we just be grateful?


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