Australian actor Chris Hemsworth recently announced that he will be taking some time off acting in order to spend more time with his family.
The actor, who is just 39 years old, recently finished filming a new series just released on Disney+ called Limitless. According to a description of the series, “Chris is on a mission to live better for longer. With the help of top scientists, he takes on six epic challenges to test mind and body to the max.”
After filming the final episode, Hemsworth told Vanity Fair that he is taking a break from his career to spend time with his family, including his daughter India, 10, his 8-year-old twin sons, and his wife, Elsa Pataky.
“Doing an episode on death and facing your own mortality made me go, ‘…I’m not ready to go yet,’” Hemsworth said.
“And then you start talking about kids and family…’they’re getting older, they’re growing up, and I keep slapping another movie on top of another movie.’ Before you know it, they’re 18, and they’ve moved out of house, and I missed the window,” he added.
The actor, known for his role as Thor in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, learned while filming Limitless that he is eight to ten times more likely than the average person to develop Alzheimer’s disease.
“We’ve got every blood test one can get,” longevity physician Dr. Peter Attia told Hemsworth in the show. “And you’ve got two copies of APOE4. A set from your mom and a set from your dad.”
“APOE4 is the gene that has the strongest correlation to the development of Alzheimer’s disease; however, not much is known about it,” Fox News reports.
Hemsworth said on the episode, “The idea that I won’t be able to remember the life I experienced, or my wife, my kids, is probably my biggest fear.”
The actor noted that his grandfather suffers from Alzheimer’s disease. “He either doesn’t remember who we are, you know, his grandkids, but also even his own children, for years. It’s heartbreaking,” Hemsworth shared.
On a more hopeful note, Dr. Attia told the actor, “It’s my belief that if we take every stop possible, we can reduce your risk to that of anyone else.”
After filming the episode on mortality, Hemsworth said, “I want to sit and be in this space with a greater sense of stillness and gratitude.”
Hemsworth has not discussed his faith openly in public. But in 2017, the actor narrated the first Christmas story of the birth of Jesus Christ at Disneyland’s Candlelight Processional.
As Christmas approaches this year, and families travel and gather together, it’s important to remember the most important things in life.
Directly facing and pondering the inevitability of one’s own death – like Hemsworth has done – can motivate us to focus on these important things, like faith and family.
Kudos to Chris for calling a timeout on his career to spend more time with his wife and children. Money and fame are temporary and fleeting things – but time spent with family is priceless. And once it’s gone, you can never get it back.
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