Parkinson’s: Right Now

“Don’t let yesterday use up too much of today.” Will Rogers

“Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow. It empties today of its strength.” Corrie Ten Boom

Today: A constant theme here is to embrace today, try not to live in the past, and importantly, try not to fear what has yet happened in tomorrow. Why is this important? For me, with Parkinson’s, we have a built-in fear-meter of the future; it’s called having a progressive neurodegenerative disorder. It is easy to get lost in this fear factor, to wake up dreading what might have changed overnight while we slept. It is easy to read about the failed drug study of yet another compound we all thought for sure would cure us of this disorder. It is easy to feel pity for yourself, asking the crucial question, ‘why me?’

“Quiet the mind and the soul will speak.” Ma Jaya

Yesterday: Did something profoundly happen yesterday to rob you of today? A valid question, and in today’s world, potentially a reasonable question. However, for the vast majority of us with Parkinson’s, it was just a day of the same ol’ stiffness, same ol’ pains, and same ol’ issues arising. Still there, but not better but not worse. The détente of Parkinson’s where whatever you are doing is holding course to the always present disorder. Better than giving up, giving in, and quitting. Be mindful of this time past, be aware of its presence, but put it away in a place of no worry. The day is done; focus on today.

“We have only now, only this single eternal moment opening and unfolding before us, day and night.” Jack Kornfield

Tomorrow: The next day will arrive soon enough, so focus your mind on today’s activities, plan, work, play, exercise, live, and love. Do not let anything about what is around the turn ahead stop you from focusing on today. What you do today makes the difference for tomorrow. What you plan today makes a change in course for tomorrow. Thus, do not look ahead for the change. Look within for today to make the change happen.

“Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it.” Eckhart Tolle

“Right Now” by Van Halen: The story behind the rock band Van Halen is almost magical. Two brothers from the Netherlands moved to the USA with their parents and started a band that moved the world for several decades (for a brief history, read the following article, click here). Better yet, watch this interview entitled “Interview with Eddie Van Halen: Is Rock ‘n’ Roll All About Reinvention?” (click here)

A constant discussion about Van Halen is not about the tremendous guitar playing ability of Eddie Van Halen (sadly, he passed away recently) or his drum-playing brother Alex Van Halen, it is who was the best lead vocalist (David Lee Roth, Sammy Hagar, or Gary Cherone)? I liked the band members more so than I did the singers, but my preference in favorite songs tend to favor Sammy Hagar as lead vocalist, which includes “Right Now.”

“When we dance, the journey itself is the point, as when we play music the playing itself is the point.” Alan Watts

Message Behind “Right Now” by Van Halen: The lyrics point to living for today, being in the moment, and making changes as you approach tomorrow; the song starts with, “Don’t want to wait ’til tomorrow / Why put it off another day?” And the song ends with, “Tell me, what are you waiting for? / Turn this thing around.” For those of us with Parkinson’s, why wait for the cure? You are the cure itself. Tackle the problem today by changing now, focusing on making minor changes that slow the changing tide day by day. Breathe, focus on now, live today stronger than yesterday. Live today by not focusing on tomorrow. Breathe and live.

“Mindfulness cares not of happy/sad, past/present, right/wrong, but it demands you seek out the present moment without worry of what’s ahead and without guilt of what has passed.” Frank C. Church”

Right Now”- Lyrics byVan Halen

Don’t want to wait ’til tomorrow
Why put it off another day?
One more walk through problems
Built-up and stands in our way, ah

One step ahead, one step behind me
Now you gotta run to get even
Make future plans or dream about yesterday, hey
C’mon turn, turn this thing around,

hey
It’s your tomorrow
(Right now),
C’mon, it’s everything
(Right now),
Catch a magic moment, do it
Right here and now
It means everything

Miss the beat, you lose the rhythm
And nothing falls into place, no
Only missed by a fraction
Slipped a little off your pace, oh

The more things you get, the more you want
Just trade in one for the other
Workin’ so hard, to make it easier, whoa
Got to turn, c’mon turn this thing around,


It’s your tomorrow
(Right now)
C’mon, it’s everything
(Right now)
Catch that magic moment, do it
Right here and now


It means everything
It’s enlightened me, right now
What are you waitin’ for?
Oh, yeah, right now,

hey
It’s your tomorrow
(Right now)
C’mon, it’s everything
(Right now)
Catch that magic moment, and do it right, right now
Oh, right now
It’s what’s happening
Right here and now
Right now
It’s right now
Oh
Tell me, what are you waiting for?
Turn this thing around

Van Halen – Right Now

“Empty your mind, be formless. Shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.” Bruce Lee

Cover image by Ian Lindsay from Pixabay

8 Replies to “Parkinson’s: Right Now”

  1. Thank you for your sharing this beautiful picture of life. Your message was perfectly timed; just what I needed!

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

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  2. I am thoroughly enjoying your site. I’ve had PD ( diagnosed) for 5 years. Many things are going well. I can’t seem to find a solution for night feet cramping. Any ideas?

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    1. Thanks a lot, appreciate your comment. Night feet cramping? That’s a tough one. Everyone is different, especially PD folks, and check with your neurologist or physical therapist, my advice is my own thinking. Night cramping, can be promoted by a lot of things, loss of dopamine would just exacerbate the situation. Make sure you are exercising, inactivity could promote foot cramping. Make sure you stretch frequently, especially if you are exercising, and do it at bedtime and when you wake up (I do stretches in bed).Stay hydrated, drink more water and less caffeinated-beverages (and less alcohol, it causes dehydration). Easier (I think) to deal with having to urinate during the evening rather than foot cramping. Hydration is important. Make sure you are getting both a good mix of B vitamins AND magnesium. I take vitamin B1 in the morning and evening, and also at the same time, I take magnesium threonate. B1 and Magnesium are good for reducing foot cramps, threonate helps magnesium enter the blood brain barrier, and both B1 and magnesium are good for brain health in PD. Good I icky! Frank

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      1. HI again, I take 200 mg/day of vitamin B1 (thiamine HCl) [100 mg capsule in the morning and 100 mg capsule in the evening (from Nature’s Way obtained through Vitacost)] and 2000 mg/day of magnesium threonate (Magtein) [2 x 500 mg capsules in the morning and 2 x 500 mg capsules in the evening ( from Teraputics purchased from Amazon.com)].

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  3. Thank you for your blog sharing your journey. Having been diagnosed with PD two weeks ago, your positive discussions are helping me cope and to focus on keeping myself in the moment instead of looking at possible monsters lurking around the bend. I need that desperately right now! Grace to you for your continued journey and that of all us us in this community. Kim

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    1. Kim, good luck, and thanks for your kind words. They truly matter. Our journey are now similar, yet because it’s PD, our trajectories will vary from one another. Good luck especially at the beginning of it all, let your Neurologist know how it’s going and what you are doing. There are so many things to learn about PD; go slow in understanding the disorder. Take care, Fank

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