• Marie-anne Rouse

On a gloomy 1894 November day

On a gloomy 1894 November day, the midwife tells the new parents that their newborn baby is too fragile and will not likely survive.  Their baby has tuberculosis, they say.  Doctors concurred.

As a parent, I know how heartbreaking that kind of news is since we were given some unsettling news about our child when he was four.  You can bet that we took the news with the mindset that we would go to the end of the world if there was anything we could do to improve the odds which is what these parents did.

They were determined to put an end to all the negative head shaking and put aside medications that seemed to do little for their child.  Instead they decided to have a different focus.  All their food came from their farm garden and as soon as this little boy could stand, his dad would exercise his little arms and legs.

Some people called it a miracle that by the time he was a teenager, not only had he defied the predictions made at his birth, but was also working out with weights and furthermore became a college athlete playing baseball, running track, wrestling and boxing!

What those people didn’t necessarily see was the long journey that had taken place.  The long afternoons of bed rest, walks in the woods and even learning to fence were all part of the wellness path that led to this “miracle”……and now the many more lives as this baby boy went on to become a doctor interested in building health.

The boy who was predicted to die has saved many lives during his lifetime and his legacy lives way beyond the grave. This boy is the man we know today as Dr. Forrest C. Shaklee who founded the Shaklee company in 1956 instead of retiring like most would at the age of 62.

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