Star columnist Dr Mary Wren - Inspired by dad to live full life

Dr Mary Wren.''Dr Mary Wren
Dr Mary Wren.''Dr Mary Wren
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My dad is 77. I am writing about him today because I am really proud of him and impressed with the way he has chosen to live.

Mum died two years ago. She had ovarian cancer but died suddenly at Christmas. We were both with her as we felt her spirit leave and we knew the best thing was to release her to the God she loved and who loved her. A massive gap is left, though.

Dad chose to go through the grieving process, he chose to keep life simple, started to write his feelings down and spent time getting out each day, often to help others. I look at him now and he is full of life. Most days he is helping people in the community, washing up at a luncheon club, transporting people to hospital or just taking time to care and chat. He has joined a drama group that do assemblies in schools and has played Moses, God and Noah!

He has chosen to embrace a new season of life.

Over recent years he has had pain in his knees and stiffness. Clinically this was diagnosed as arthritis and he started using painkillers.

Last summer we all went to the Lake District and dad chose to tackle the walks with us, some of them with quite steep climbs and on rocky ground.

Some days I winced for him as I could see he was stiff and his knees hurt-but he persevered.

The next week he commented how much better his knees felt, he also had lost 5lb during the week! Since then he has lost more weight, he exercises regularly and his knees continue to improve.

Last year he was also diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. This was a surprise but again he chose to embrace the challenge.

He has lost weight and changed his diet, becoming skilled at “low sugar” cooking and shopping. The recent blood tests show that he is now almost not diabetic at all.

Now I know that we are all different and some things are not possible for us to change, but I do think we sometimes forget that we have choices. I can choose to stay stuck in grief or choose to look outside of myself.

I can choose to accept a diagnosis and almost become it, or choose to change my lifestyle and see my body respond.

My dad is an inspiration!