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Parkinson’s Pause

When I was first diagnosed, I totally threw myself into all things Parkinson's related. A zoom support group, an online support group, reading Every Victory Counts (practically in one sitting), and then constantly referring to it; it occupied a lot of my time.

I also did as much research as I could on reputable sites, and every time I heard a new term or medication, I was sure to be looking it up. Doing the LSVT PT program 4 hours a day, 4 days a week was exhausting. Frankly, I became overwhelmed and could talk about little else.

My plan of action

I decided to declare Fridays "No Parkinson’s Day." I certainly continued exercising and taking medication, but stayed off the internet and social media for one day and just relaxed and enjoyed other interests. Just that one day off put things back in perspective.

Amazing opportunities

Then along came Health Union and the opportunity to post articles and moderate. Once again I became obsessed. I enjoy writing and sharing my perspective with others with similar challenges. I also moderate daily and enjoy the give and take as well as the feeling I may be making a difference for a fellow person with Parkinson's or caregiver.

I still am active on the My Parkinson's Team site and have made some amazing long distance friends as well as participating in the Michael J Fox Buddy program. However I realize that just spending a little daily time on other pursuits is not really working well for me. I feel stressed if I am not involved in Parkinson’s activities on a daily prolonged basis as though it is my job.

Revising my plan

Therefore I have decided to declare Friday, Saturday, and Sunday as my "No Parkinson’s Days." Once again I will continue to follow necessary protocol.

Here is what I plan to try instead. Obviously I would not do everything all in one weekend or I would be just as stressed. These are just options I want to explore at my leisure:

-Call friends and family to reconnect.
-Write thank you notes to our local merchants for the service they provide to our small community.
-Plan some outings with my husband as long as my condition cooperates. Even a short drive in the mountains will nurture my soul.
-Sit in the garden and enjoy the beauty we have created.
-Watch the hummingbirds and butterflies.
-Sit outside at night and stargaze.
-Learn to identify more constellations than I can at present.
-Find a new recipe that I can help prepare. Although I can no longer cook safely I still can be a sous chef.
-Make some new playlists.
-Listen to some old favorites without distractions.
-Sing along when appropriate.
-Try my hand at writing poetry.
-Challenge myself to some new word games. I already do paper and pencil crossword puzzle’s daily. I prefer those to the many apps that tie me to being online.
-Watch a comedy on Netflix.
-Downsize my wardrobe. Only keep what fits and I truly wear and donate the rest.
-Go to the library and take out some books.
-Read a real book rather than one online.
-Explore collage and expand on my art journal.
-Learn a new craft or language that I have yet to determine.
-Refine my meditation skills.

I am positive I will return on each Monday feeling renewed. What would your do on your day off?

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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