Since this is Thanksgiving weekend, rather than talk politics, which will be my next blog, I decided to talk about what I’m thankful for.
Now before you log off and think I’m being sappy, give me a chance here. Throughout most of my life, and I’m not that old yet (!), I have heard people say: “To your health,” “At least you’ve got your health…,” “Happy, healthy and wise,” …I think you get the point. Well, this year, I’m really happy for my health. Or, I should say, I appreciate having my health. We all know as we age, the back doesnt bend as quickly, and the aches and pains become more apparent….but then there are more serious issues.
I recently lost my Aunt Marilyn to lung cancer- although she was near 80, that was young considering her brother, my grandfather, and even her parents lived well into their 90’s. (Watch our conservatives- Leslie Marshall’s got a long life span ahead! haha!) Just two weeks later, on my mother’s side of the family, my Uncle Leon died of brain cancer. Just months ago her was fine- and then, while having dinner with friends, dropped to the floor. When the doctor said he had brain cancer, and that an operation could give him a 50-50 chance, surely we all thought he would survive after 3 of them!
When they sent him home with hospice care experts tell you it could be months, what they didnt tell us and didnt know is that it would be a few days. So I have stood by the funerals, burials, memorial services of 2 in my family. And I must admit- which is bizarre- but I think we all do it…who is next? When will it be? Then my mind starts to wander into when will I die? Will I see my children grow up? Marry? Have children? How will I die? Will it be slow? painful? Will I die in my sleep like my Dad did?
Being a pessimist, it is hard to have the Pollyanna view of life- that “live each day like it’s your last” however true it may ring for me is harder in my “glass half empty” philosophy of life. Most of us suffer many losses in life- parents, grandparents, pets- and as we get older- friends- and for some of us, like myself, our own children. These past weeks I have been ill. I had the flu, then a cough, a sore throat, lost my voice ( which is pretty bad for a talk host!) and then got walking pneumonia. When I thought I had turned the corner, I got sick again- I wont make you sick with the details. Even as I write this- I’m still not 100%- but all of this is small in comparison with the health issues so many people are afflicted with throughout the world- and of course, this is small in the grand scheme of life- my life- your life- anyone’s life- I’m sure on my deathbed I wont be thinking: “wow- I wonder how come my flu lasted so long in 2009?!” And before I close, I have a confession to make: One the 2nd part of a 3 part series on The O’Reilly Factor in which Bill interviewed Sarah Palin, Bill had me on after the interview to discuss my opinion of Ms Palin and her reponses to his questions. Of the hundreds of emails, or should I clarify and say “hate mails,” a few, usually from a femal would say something like :”you dont like Sarah Palin because you’re jealous!”
Well to be honest, there were years in my life, where a woman who was doing better than me professionally, was more attractive, thinner, etc. would make me jealous- to be honest. BUT…..I can honestly and truly say, (and it feels good!) that I am happy in my life now. I must be honest again- I fear saying that- often when I have expressed to the world “I’m Happy” bad things have happened like : losing a job, my father dying or finding out my son had a terminal illness…….but for the first time in a long time- without sounding sappy again or even conceited- I’m happy being me- being Leslie Marshall.
I dont aspire to be Oprah, Sarah Palin or any other female who makes more money, has a bigger career. I am truly blessed to do what I love, to have a radio show that continues to grow in a bad economy; to be asked to be on television on programs that are so highly rated and respected as “The O’Reilly Factor,” to have 2 healthy children, a good marriage to a supportive man whom I love, an incredible team who believes in me and my show, a roof over my head and ….well…my health- physically, emotionally and mentally. So to conclude- here’s saying Happy Thanksgiving to all of you- be thankful for what you’ve got- dont mourn what you’ve loss too long or you’ll miss the living you’ve got to do- because none of us know for how long that will be.