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Life Expectancy
Old 10-28-2013, 08:16 AM   #1
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Life Expectancy

There are few subjects that generate more discussion and different viewpoints, than Life Expectancy. Almost everything we do, or plan to do, is based on the expectancy that we will be alive to do them
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Before going further, take a minute to think about yourself... and what you expect to be doing, 5, 10, 15, 20, or 30 years from now... keeping in mind that there WILL be changes that will be dictated by your physical and mental abilities.

Now take a few minutes to go to this chart, and to consider your life expectancy at the age of birth. Looking at this from my own perspective, I have ALREADY outlived my own life expectancy by 16 years. It is a sobering thought.
Life Expectancy at Birth by Race and Sex, 1930–2010 | Infoplease.com

Current life expectancy is quite different. According to actuarial tables, in my case, I'm expected to 'probably' live, another 10 years.

BUT... how can that be? I've already lived longer than about half of the kids I went to school with, back in first grade. One of these Kids was Nancy Wilson, who died in third grade, and another was Anthony Goldsmith, who died in 6th grade. My cousin Margie, died at age 22, My Father in law, at age 45, my own father at age 56, my mother at age 84, and my aunt at age 92.
......

And the point is?....................................

Well, maybe no point at all, but just a moment in time, to consider how plans fit in with reality. How money and security fits in with what we may actually be doing when we are older. If the dream is world travel, cruising the Carribean in your own yacht, mountain climbing and hiking, or perhaps exploring the US in an RV... then you have to remember, that when you turn 75 or 80... these activities may not be your top priority.

Subject came to mind, watching a Dick Cheney interview this AM, promoting his new book "Heart"... Not just the part about the five early heart attacks , or his more recent heart transplantat age 71... and not about changing lifestyles, or even the new technology that extends life... The part that hit home was the fact of dealing with great emotional changes at each point of crisis... Of having hours and days and weeks of consultations with the doctors... many operations, with no certain outcome and of wondering whether or not life would go on. Just another person like you and me.

And the point is....

Perhaps that planning, isn't everything. That one more year, may not be as important as lving for today and tomorrow, and next week. Your experience will not be the same as mine, and our dreams for the future will be very different, but at the same time we take responsibility for our lives and those around us... there is good reason to live for today.
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Old 10-28-2013, 11:08 AM   #2
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life expectancy is made up from genes, luck and behavior.

If you have diabetics in your family history, you have to give up sugar. If your family has had heart problems, you have to excercise. We know overweight leads to earlier deaths. And, we know that medical improvements have added years to the average life compared to a generation ago.

I'm always amazed at the way people eat, ignore excercise and then tell others how "lucky" they are because they look good. Most of it isn't luck, it's a combination of genes and effort. Finally, I've known younger people that have taken care of themselves that get cancer or have a heart attack at a young age. Yes, I need to live for today but I love life and so I also prepare for tomorrow. I wish I would have started living for tomorrow (health wise) years ago but it is never too late to start. Now that I'm older I still have the opportunity to enjoy today and, hopefully, I'll be able to enjoy "today" until I'm in my 90's. And........I haven't had a donut or piece of cake in 10 years.......hoping it keeps the weight off and my chance of long lfve increased.
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Old 10-28-2013, 12:02 PM   #3
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Then there is survivor bias - the longer you live the better your odds:
Life Expectancy by Age, 1850–2004 | Infoplease.com

Or you could get hit by a bus.

"Perhaps that planning, isn't everything. That one more year, may not be as important as lving for today and tomorrow, and next week. Your experience will not be the same as mine, and our dreams for the future will be very different, but at the same time we take responsibility for our lives and those around us... there is good reason to live for today. " Well said.
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Old 10-28-2013, 01:08 PM   #4
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Hmmm - party til you puke! 30 years in New Orleans. I did auto deduct ER investment money before violating every frugal rule on the rest.

Now I did survive being up north post Katrina - meds have brought down chloresterol, BP - quit smoking and drinking, lost 30 lbs, walk and exercise on those dumb machines.

Suck lemons and don't smile as much BUT moved my life expectancy on my ER calc from 84.6 to 91. Right? Wrong? No idea?

heh heh heh - ok a little tongue in cheek but when that sinful grin overtakes me I drive over to the Louisiana Kitchen for a Muff or like last night (Saints AND Chiefs won) make baked spagetti and Shrimp simmered with a little Zatarains liquid boil and red gravy. And Vietnamese poboy type bread.

I studiously avoid any attempt to recapture my youth or make a bucket list!
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