“Stand up to your obstacles and do something about them. You will find that they haven’t half the strength you think they have.” Norman Vincent Peale
The Journey To Better [The (definite article thē, ˈthē\ used, especially before a noun, with a specifying or particularizing effect) Journey (noun jour·ney \ˈjər-nē\ an act of traveling from one place to another) To (preposition \tə, tu̇, ˈtü\ used to indicate the place, person, or thing that someone or something moves toward) Better (adjective bet·ter \ˈbe-tər\ higher in quality)]:
1. The moment you believe that with work and sustained effort, you can live through the slowly evolving path of Parkinson’s; become belligerent against Parkinson’s and stay the course.
“Life isn’t a matter of milestones, but of moments.” Rose Kennedy
2. The moment you practice mindfulness and breathe deep to still your mind, to relax your stiff body, and to allow the sun outside to percolate within; staying mindful during your walks will enlighten your heart.
“In Asian languages, the word for ‘mind’ and the word for ‘heart’ are same. So if you’re not hearing mindfulness in some deep way as heartfulness, you’re not really understanding it. Compassion and kindness towards oneself are intrinsically woven into it. You could think of mindfulness as wise and affectionate attention.” Jon Kabat-Zinn
3. The moment you realize this is a life-altering event, adapt, survive, create positive changes, keep moving, and focus; life-altering yes but use Parkinson’s to reaffirm your life-living effort.
“In fact, Parkinson’s has made me a better person. A better husband, father and overall human being.” Michael J. Fox
4. The moment you use persistence in managing your disorder by knowing how to counter its difficult effects (e.g., by frequent stretching and daily exercise, by staying warm, trying not to stress, trying to be less self-conscious, and getting enough sleep); work hard ever second of every future minute/hour/day/week/month/year ahead and live fully by staying persistent to Parkinson’s.
“You are only a prisoner when you surrender.” Tad Williams
5. The moment you become educated about Parkinson’s and better understand its complex issues that cause complicated physiological disturbances; thus, a better personalized-treatment strategy will evolve when you talk with your Neurologist.
“Experience is a brutal teacher, but you learn. My God, do you learn.” C.S. Lewis
6. The moment you are grateful for everyone in your life, for all you have, the battle against Parkinson’s is now on level ground; your gratitude will be felt by those around you, giving you renewed strength and new life-leverage.
“Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.” Ralph Waldo Emerson
7. The moment you practice wholeheartedness you will live honestly by owning and embracing life in its fullest extent; each day ahead will behave differently then ever before (good/not as good/difficult), yet your life still matters a lot.
“There are many tenets of Wholeheartedness, but at its very core is vulnerability and worthiness; facing uncertainty, exposure, and emotional risks, and knowing that I am enough.” Brené Brown
8. The moment you become positive knowing that the obstacles of Parkinson’s are ever present unless you mount a strong countermeasure; focus positively to not become distracted by this disorder.
“In the game of life, we all receive a set of variables and limitations in the field of play. We can either focus on the lack thereof or empower ourselves to create better realities with the pieces we play the game with.” T.F. Hodge
9. The moment you strive to be strong, both physically and emotionally, is critical because our disorder will slowly evolve; staying strong in all aspects of your life allows you to better resist these changes.
“Sometimes life knocks you on your ass… get up, get up, get up!!! Happiness is not the absence of problems, it’s the ability to deal with them.” Steve Maraboli
10. The moment you become hopeful as you deal with the daily nuances of Parkinson’s; always remember a heart that sees hope stays strong and will not wither over the course of the rest of your life.
“Hope is like the sun, which, as we journey toward it, casts the shadow of our burden behind us.” Samuel Smiles
The journey to better: Allow your loved-ones, family, friends, and colleagues to join you on this new life-trek. Stay on a focused path as you navigate this adventure, this journey to better. Like you, I am trying hard to keep focused on what matters the most; in spite of my Parkinson’s, I am still here, and you’re still here.
“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” Lao Tzu