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As I See It > June 2012

Hello, friends!

June is upon us; isn't it hard to believe that the year is nearly half over? I hope this reading finds you well and enjoying the last days of spring.

I was recently chatting with Commissioner Calvin Hayden, and we talked about the fact that Johnson County scored high in a recent County Health Ranking and Roadmaps survey of Kansas counties. This survey ranked counties on a number of health issues and rated them overall, based on how they stacked up in the individual categories. Johnson County ranked second overall; Riley County ranked first.

Those results got us asking the question: Which of the six districts in Johnson County is healthiest? Is it the First District, with its many bike trails? Maybe it's the Second District, being so close to Shawnee Mission Park. How about the Third District, with all those retired Chiefs players, or the Fourth District, with all the great health clubs? Or maybe the Fifth District, with its high-quality hospitals? Or it could be the Sixth District, known for all the clean rural living!

We may never figure out who has the healthiest district, but one thing is sure: a great quality of life is tied to one's health.

Being healthy doesn't mean we have to be running marathons, although that is one option. Being healthy can be accomplished through little things, such as changes in diet or exercise patterns.

A great example is my dad, Alan. My mom is a two-time multiple myeloma survivor. My dad decided that he was going to pray for her during her chemotherapy, and he also decided that he was going to take that time as an opportunity to get healthier, as well. Every night he walked and prayed for her, eventually building up to an hour-long walk. He also made some better choices in the foods he ate.

All this work paid off, as eventually he went from 295 pounds to 215 pounds, a weight he hadn't seen since entering the Navy. On another positive note, my mom got through her chemotherapy and enjoys a cancer-free diagnosis!

If you would like to take steps toward a healthier you, look no further than the Johnson County Park & Recreation District. On top of maintaining the parks that we know and love, throughout the year the district offers many opportunities for people of all ages and fitness levels to get active. For more information on programs, visit http://jcprd.com/activities/index.cfm.

If you would like a printed copy of the district's activity guide, contact me and I will make sure you receive one.

As I close today, I want to wish my grandmother a happy 90th birthday this month. Her name is Ally Rose, and she lives in Seneca, a small farm town in Nemaha County, Kan. I spent a few summers with her when I was a kid, and enjoyed the time with her immensely. She is a wonderful treasure for my family and me, and I look forward to celebrating with her soon.

For more information about multiple myeloma, check out the International Myeloma Foundation at http://myeloma.org.
Of course, if I can be of any assistance with any county issue, call 913-715-0434 or e-mail Jason.Osterhaus@jocogov.org. I would love to hear from you.