My life as a degenerate

Last updated:    December 2, 2015 (PST)

Big stick of the day!

Parkinson's disease - a life sentence?

The photo above was taken on October 8 2012, when I didn't feel right but didn't know what was wrong. I am holding my "big stick of the day", an idea I borrowed from a recent Cul de Sac cartoon out of the Sunday paper. For some reason, I felt that I needed a big stick of the day and was glad to have been given one (thanks to several windy days!).

In December 2012, I was diagnosed with the degenerative neurological disorder known as Parkinson's disease. While it explained a lot of things at the time, I now spend time most days talking to others, reading and learning more about this - disorder? disability? condition?

Yes, condition is the word I choose at the moment, in hope that each new tidbit of information will allow me to live more deeply, comfortably and meaningfully. Life goes on after a diagnosis of Parkinson's, and it is what you make it. Meanwhile, I am a PwP (Person with Parkinson's).

These pages (arranged in reverse chronological order) are an overview of my symptoms, my diagnosis, my medication and my life with Parkinson's.


Nov:  Degenerate degenerating? - 10 stories of when my brain wasn't firing on all cylinders...!


Nov:  Let there be light!
Oct:  The Parkinson's option
May:  Parkinson's Awareness Month Photo A Day, May 2014


Sep:  Been there, done that, got the t-shirt: Slogans
Sep:  Speech: Use it or lose it!
Sep:  Exercise options: Forced exercise (FE) for dog owners
Sep:  Diagnosis: Looking back

Aug:  In good company? Other PwP
Aug:  Decrepitude report: Things I have
Aug:  Dealing with the public: Taking control - Another PwP card!
Aug:  Massage those trigger points away!
Aug:  Medication update: What is too low?
Jul:   Dealing with the public: Taking control - A PwP card

Jun:  Turning my diagnosis around
Jun:  Music: Good for the brain as well as the soul
May:  Symptoms: Motor and non-motor symptoms list
May:  Exercise options: keeping my brain and body in shape
Apr-Jun:  Support groups: Groups near me in Oregon

Mar:  Medication update: Lowering the dosage - a courageous act?
Feb:  Medication update: Too much too soon?
Jan-Mar:  Support groups: What a support!
Jan-Mar:  Physiotherapy: Treating my shoulder pain
Jan:  Brain health: not firing on all cylinders
Jan:  Instant relief - starting the honeymoon period
Jan:  Formal diagnosis


Dec:  Symptoms: Let's make a list!
Dec:  Surviving the year's end
Dec:  The medical stuff
"Why is everything so hard?!"


Early warning signs we all missed

Advice to live by

Be positive, exercise, eat well and take rest breaks.

I have taken some of these on board from interviews, blogs, forums, books and articles. Others have been given to me personally, from fellow PwPs.

Adapt, adopt and ad lib.      Bob Kuhn, Dec 7, 2012

Donít be intimidated by your diagnosis.      Michael J. Fox, Apr 15, 2013

Ask ďWhy canít I Ö?Ē       Michael J. Fox, Apr 15, 2013

Donít let it get on top of you. Stay positive. Fight back. Adapt.      Steve V D, Jun 20, 2013

The tremor is a real pain. Just stay calm and keep focused.      Simon I, Jun 30, 2013

Manage the condition and keep regular on the medication.      David C, Jul 8, 2013

Don't let inanimate objects make you angry.      (can't remember where I read that), 2013

Make sure you have other things in your life besides Parkinsonís.      Ben P, Jun 28, 2013

The vital thing is to remember that you still have an important role within the family. You are still a husband, father, etc.      Simon I, May 6, 2014

Useful stuff that helped me

Websites to subscribe to
Forums and chat rooms
Inspiring and useful blogs
Other websites with interesting info
Books telling of experiences with living with Parkinson's
Books with good medical info about Parkinson's

What do you know about Parkinson's disease?

Take these quizzes to see how much you know about the disease. Before I found out I had it, I was aware of only the tremor symptom. But there are so many more symptoms and they vary from person to person!

What Is Parkinson's Disease?
What Causes Parkinson's Disease?
Symptoms and Diagnosis
Surgical Treatments and Other Therapies

Any questions? Please drop me a line at sheryll at sheryll dot net.

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