Fighting Parkinson’s, and keeping your faith strong

Here we are, half way into my 30-day, November to Remember, No Excuses November, challenge to get started on the Recipe for Recovery. As I am certain you know by now, Marie recovered from PD doing the Recipe the Recovery, so her “excuse” for not accepting my challenge is an excellent excuse. Good for you, Marie. As for everybody else, those who have accepted and those who have not, keeping your faith strong is an essential ingredient in the Recipe.

I have said in the past that faith without action is meaningless for Parkinson’s recovery. To provide you an example of this, here is an excerpt from my personal Parkinson’s Daily Journal two years ago today, when I had been doing the Recipe for Recovery about two months:

“11/15/09. Up at 4. Very slow. Think it was from cutting grass yesterday. Got to kitchen at 4:14. I believe that is my new world record for slowness…I had a hard day today. Very slow, lots of pain, very dizzy. I am going to blame it on cutting the grass yesterday and see how I feel tomorrow.”

What do you think made me get up the next day and do the Recipe for Recovery? Faith! I had faith in myself, my Higher Power, and my Recipe for Recovery. My mantra was, “I have the power to heal myself.” But I also knew that faith was not enough…I had to take action to move my recovery forward. It was the understanding that faith without action is meaningless for Parkinson’s recovery that got me out of bed every day to take action against Parkinson’s.

Think about it. I had cut the grass many times in the past and it never had resulted in extreme slowness with the addition of pain and dizziness. However, early on I knew I needed to just accept what Parkinson’s had to dish out and keep the faith. It is why I chose to blame my slowness, pain and dizziness on cutting the grass instead of on Parkinson’s. I was doing the best I could to live my life instead of living my Parkinson’s.

Most of the time we view progress as always moving forward. I do not see it that way with Parkinson’s. To me, progress with Parkinson’s recovery includes not moving backwards. This is a progressively degenerative disease by definition. If you can stop Parkinson’s from progressing, then it is not moving forward and making progress against you, so you must be making progress against it. Keep your faith strong.

It is all in our attitudes and our faith. Look at my 30-day challenge — every time you do some Qigong or meditation or eat better food, you are making progress. Instead of looking at your external symptoms day-by-day to determine whether you are making progress, look inside yourself and feel the healing. If we have the right attitude and faith, then we know that every step we take to fight Parkinson’s is progress whether we feel something good at the moment or not.

So, look inside yourself, find that spark of faith you used to have but misplaced somewhere along the way, and grab onto it, light it up, and say, “I have the power to heal myself.” Please remember to hold onto that spark of faith strongly…you will need it to fight your Parkinson’s on the bumpy road ahead. And while you are holding tightly to your spark of faith, take action against your Parkinson’s and defeat it! Aren’t you worth it?

All my best,



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11 Responses to Fighting Parkinson’s, and keeping your faith strong

  1. Teri Rye says:

    Thanks, Howard! It’s good to see how you dealt with day-to-day ups and downs throughout your journey to recovery. Yesterday was a good day. I felt a glimpse of improvement. I was actually able to write some. My pain was less. Today I got up at 5 AM and did my Qigong exercises. I am stiffer and have more pain today. But I will not be discouraged. I know that every day that I do the exercises and eat a good diet, I am making progress towards recovery.
    Fighting the good fight…

  2. Thanks for the great reminders, Howard…. very timely as I’m going through a period where I’m having difficulty with sleep and resulting low energy… the one constant is my belief that I can heal myself…. the daily exercise routine, though more challenging in the present, is a way I confirm my determination and conviction… and I know my energy will return…



  3. Malcolm says:

    Hi Howard,

    A much needed bit of inspiration. I feel that I have been sliding both emotionally and physically. I’ve even been thinking “drugs”. Your inspiration and particularly Marie’s recovery (I need to know more about her story) have flipped the switch for me as we speak. Time to get back at it and to believe!! Fight on!

  4. kumar V Srinivasan says:

    i am feeling so much dependent on the medicine so that if i do not take the medicine at the right moment , i am feeling totally exhauted and powerless,to do any activity with palpitatiosns in the heart and the accompmanying leg spasms early in the morning..therfore how u aamanaged wthout medicine shows your faith in the ultimate Reality and your very special attitude towards life in genaral

  5. Howard says:

    Hi Teri, Penny, Malcolm and Kumar,

    I am happy you all have shared your feelings and that today’s post was helpful. Parkinson’s works really hard at making us lose faith and confidence in ourselves. I think you realized in today’s post that part of the recovery is regaining our faith in ourselves, which helps us re-unite our connection with our Higher Power, which immensely helps our faith that we have chosen the right path toward recovery. And, as I stated in the post, “Please remember to hold onto that spark of faith strongly…you will need it to fight your Parkinson’s on the bumpy road ahead.” I am grateful to be riding on the bumpy road with all of you.


  6. Nancy Thomas says:

    I’m blaming ‘bad days’ on the time change. I think the impact of it on our bodies is difficult for those with PD, and others as well.
    Kumar, when I read my log from this time last year, I too was struggling with timing everything I did around my meds, and I still felt like crap much of the time. Today I am Rx free and have more energy and less symptoms and I have to wonder how much of what we think is PD is really also side effects of the drugs. You are not powerless, and what we are doing is nothing you can’t do. We are all just the little engine that could – keeping going up that hill and affirming “I can”

    • Howard says:

      Hi Nancy,

      You are an inspiration to all of us, and reaching out to Kumar by sharing your story and struggles is such a blessing. Thank you! Your “I can” affirmation as you go up the hill makes your faith shine through brightly. Good for you!


  7. Helen Gill says:

    Thanks to all of you for your comments it all helps to know there are other people not taking drugs and keeping faith that we will heal from pd. I had a lot of pain last night after tearing up paper files I was throwing out and realised some jobs at this stage I can’t do if I don’t want more stiffness and pain. I swim daily at the beach, and I am eating well and meditating I can’t seem to download the exercises though and I am now

    starting the chanting. I believe I will get better I need daily inspiration from Spirit and you guys. Thankyou Helen

    • Howard says:

      Hi Helen,

      Now that we have gotten the exercise videos issue cleared up off line, you are full steam ahead. Believing you will get better is very important and I am happy to see that you have that part accomplished. Onward toward recovery!


  8. kumar V Srinivasan says:

    hi Nancy, thank you very much for your comments. it has given me a fairly good idea about where i am today amd what does the future hold for me,. i will be showing your comments to my better half and ask her opinioon about it all.

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