I’ve been listening to Hawaiian music on a streaming web site called The Radio.com and a number of the songs they played were by Israel Kamakawiwo’ole – better known as IZ.
As you can tell from the video, IZ was morbidly obese. For his later appearances, he needed a fork-lift to get him on stage. He finally came to his senses and went on a diet. Unfortunately, it was too late and he died of a heart attack.
I learned about IZ following our trip to Hawaii a few years ago. I heard his voice on a recording at the airport as we were awaiting our flight back to the mainland. After getting home, I went out and bought one of his recordings. That’s when I learned that this man with the beautiful singing voices was no longer with us.
I am a fan of the ‘educational’ cable channels – The History Channel, The Discovery Channel, The Learning Channel, and so forth. There have been numerous shows centering on morbidly obese individuals. These folks are so far beyond ‘fat’ that it defies comprehension.
Most of the individuals have been bedridden for years. They cannot get out of bed to get food, or to attend to bathroom functions. That means that someone else must do those things for them.
I can understand serving someone his or her meals in bed. I wouldn’t hesitate to do that for someone who was suffering from some sort of illness. However, I would draw the line at helping with bowel movements and voiding of the bladder.
If I had a child or significant other who couldn’t toilet him or her self because of a weight problem, the chow line would stop until that problem went away.
Obviously, if my loved one was suffering from the effects of a stroke, accident, or something else – other than obesity – I’d overcome my distaste for wiping an adult’s butt. But if that person needs help simply because he or she is too heavy to make the trip to the bathroom, it is time for a crash diet.
I may sound heartless, but consider the alternative.
These morbidly obese individuals didn’t get that way without the help of someone. Perhaps those someones are people who need to be needed – mothers who can’t let go, or mothers who won’t let go.
Is enabling someone to grow to a thousand pounds or more really a sign of love? Not in my book.
I am overweight to the point of being obese. But I can still take my two hundred and eighty pounds to the bathroom when I need to go. Unfortunately, I can also carry myself to the dinner table.
But I guarantee you that I will not become morbidly obese to the point that someone else must toilet me.
We’ve lost IZ. We don’t need to lose any more talented people because someone is willing to jump in and help them kill themselves.
If you are an enabler of any kind, step back and take a good hard look at the situation. Are you really doing someone a favor? Or are you helping someone commit suicide?
Now that I’ve got that off my chest, I’m going to picture myself on a beach in Hawaii and concentrate on the hula dancers.