Aging Gratefully

Gayle Shapiro Meet the TeamThe following is a blog post from Gayle Shapiro, Daniele’s mom, and member of the Diabetes Dominator Team.


I just passed a milestone – my 63rd birthday.  I can’t believe it – when I say those words I think it must be some mistake, since I feel like I’m less than half that age!  Can I really be eligible for Social Security???  A number of my co-workers are retiring at this age, but I feel like I have many good, productive years left in me!  I think I still possess most of my mental faculties and I feel great physically.

My mother passed away at the age of 63, and my only sister was 61 when she died.  That’s why I say passing my 63rd birthday was a milestone.  I have now outlived my two closest older female relatives.  So for that, I’m extremely grateful.  They both had serious health problems, so that has inspired me to do my best to maintain my good health.  As long as I feel good, I want to be around for a very long time to continue to savor my joyous life!  My primary inspiration is my amazing daughter, Daniele, the Diabetes Dominator, who motivates me to stay on track by being the most positive role model anyone could wish for.  I so admire her tremendous self-discipline in her clean eating habits and consistent fitness training.  She certainly did not inherit those traits from me!  So I’m trying now to live up to her impressive example.

I say I’m aging gratefully because it’s true – I’m extremely thankful for so many things:

  • I’m happy!  I truly enjoy every day of my life.  I am definitely a “glass half full” kind of person, and I try to find the good and positive aspects in everyday events.  I’ve lost many of my closest loved ones to early death, so that has instilled me with the philosophy of living every day like it might be your last, because you never know when your time is up. 
  • My very precious family and circle of close friends.  Long before it became a commonplace piece of psychological advice, I always made spending time with my loved ones a top priority.  If it’s true that having a strong social network helps prevent dementia, I’m definitely using that tool. 
  • Laughter!  Everyone please stop being so serious and look at the lighter side of things.  Watch a funny movie or comedian.  It’s like a workout for your mind and also has positive physical effect. 
  • Nature.  There’s nothing more soothing than a walk in the woods or the beach.  My place of worship – puts everything in perspective. 
  • I have a good job where I’m valued and appreciated, with great benefits and health insurance!  I don’t have to elaborate – everyone knows how important this is. 
  • Travel – my most beloved pastime.  Although Maui is my favorite place in the world, I have a long list of places I still need to see, and hope for the opportunity to realize those desires! 
  • Yoga!  I’m a very new practitioner, so I can’t say too much about it yet other than it makes me feel great, mentally and physically, and I look forward to learning much more about it. 

I’m sure there are many more things I could list, but you get the idea.  We all have the innate ability to turn situations around in our own mind to suit our needs.  I believe that putting things in the proper perspective is a valuable key to finding your happy place in life.


What are some of the things you are thankful for? Let us know in comments below.



  1. Dave McGlynn says

    What a wonderful story, if only more people would follow what Gayle posted in her blog. Hopefully the world would have a lot less of what I think are preventable Illnesses.
    She has a great daughter. I met Daniele about 3 years ago, she was a trainer at a gym where I took her classes. And she opened my eyes to not just working out, but also what you did when you left the gym. Mainly Nutrition!!!

    Dave Mc, 73 – Bristol, Pa.

    • DiabetesDominator says

      Thanks so much Dave! My mom is amazing and the reason I’m so strong and motivated today 🙂

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