This may go down for me as the year of getting well. That’s my optimistic way of saying since the flu shot or antibiotics or even Purell doesn’t always work, I must be building up my immunity. I’m now on round four of a plague that seems to cycle around bimonthly. I’m no stranger to the chronic infestation of the moment, or chronic anything really – it’s my middle name.

I shared that a couple years ago with a well-known and well-respected women’s health guru who then “prescribed” me some seriously top-shelf multi-vitamins and supplements that she swore would change my life – and I bought right in.

It only took a couple of years to learn that trying to keep up with the rich and famous is just dumb, because the top-dollar price of this magic “prescription” pretty much broke my bank. When you could buy a car with what you’ve spent on daily vitamins, you know it’s time to quit.

But what if I really need them? And how do I really know? I had a lot more energy and my hair and nails grew fast, so I assumed they truly worked. But a cure-all they are not, no matter who says they are. I still wrestle with the same old chronic health issues and seem to catch the nasty bugs in spite of their expensive claims.

So I headed on over to my local Whole Foods and checked out the alternatives. Even those at half-the-cost of the magical ones were just too much to spend. Why are vitamins so expensive? Is this a marketing craze because people are gobbling up the concept of special daily pills in search of perfect health?

I was. And I’m still on the fence. Some of the wisest people I know swear by a daily handful, but what do you do when you can’t afford what they say will make you well? “If you can’t afford to invest in your own health then you don’t really want to heal,” someone said.  Um, that could not be less true.

Life is just a balancing act. Sure it may be easier for those rolling in the dough, but I don’t knock that abundance isn’t always about dollars in the bank. Although when I saw my checking account balance the other day I flashed right back to college…it gave new meaning to the words “lean years.”

So I’m rethinking my path to perfect health. And I’m pretty sure healing comes from within. That’s not to say that daily vitamins wouldn’t help, but I’m changing how I think about how to feel physically good. Because I don’t think it’s all the ingredients in a vitamin as much as the ingredients in life.

Most of us are way ahead of the game because we can afford to eat. We have food and fresh water and even wine – that’s doing pretty well. We have shelter and heat and clothes and jobs – again that’s not too bad. Some of us are even fortunate enough to have unconditional love. No, it doesn’t always pay the bills but it certainly helps the soul. Throw some fun and laughter in and I’m betting that all beats a pill.

I just took my last handful of what I thought would change my life, but real change means making different choices. Then time will tell. Just like recovering from the flu, change takes its own time.

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