Fighting Parkinson’s, and being your real self

Parkinson’s has a way of making you feel like you are somebody else. You do not move the way you used to, or look the way you used to, or think the way you used to, or feel the way you used to. Many times, I have mentioned that Parkinson’s is a symptom of your life being out of balance, and to bring yourself back into balance, you have to let go of your old self (perception of who you think you need to be) and become your new self (which is the original self that never left you). About a week ago, I was asked if I could explain the new self/original self concept more in depth. Here is what I said.

You are not your body. Your body has Parkinson’s physical symptoms.
You are not your mind. You mind has Parkinson’s stress, anxiety, anger, frustration, worries and fears.
You are your soul, your essence, your spot of grace (whatever you call the “something” inside you that powers the rest of you and makes you uniquely you). This part of you is untouched by Parkinson’s. It is just covered up by the toxins of your body and mind.

Let’s say you go to the store and buy a shining silver teapot. You take the teapot home and put it on the sideboard to admire it. And then, you get busy with life and you do not spend any time with the teapot for the next six months. When you return to the sideboard, you are horrified to see that your teapot is covered in tarnish.

At first you think, “Oh no, what have I done. I have neglected my teapot and it is ruined.” Then, somebody points out to you that if you get silver polish, you can remove the tarnish. So, you get the silver polish, grab the teapot, and head to the kitchen sink.

You moisten the sponge, dip it in the silver polish, and you begin to rub the teapot. The first thing you notice is that it begins to look worse than when you started — there is black and gray pasty junk and it smells bad. In this moment of “cleaning crisis,” you think, “I have faith that the silver polish will work,” and you press forward.

Eventually, you have cleaned the entire teapot, washed it, dried it, and shined it. It looks like a brand new teapot. However, in that moment of admiring your “brand new teapot,” it occurs to you that you are admiring the original, beautiful teapot you brought home from the store six months ago. And you realize that although the teapot had been covered in tarnish, the tarnish did not damage the teapot at all.

The original shining silver teapot was under there all along, unblemished by the tarnish. When somebody comes over to your house, they say, “That is a beautiful new teapot you got to replace the old tarnished one.” And you smile and say “thank you” because deep down you know they are staring at the original teapot, and it shines.

Original you, your soul, your essence, your spot of grace (whatever you call the “something” inside you that powers the rest of you and makes you uniquely you)…he or she is in there. Right now, you are just covered up with a tarnish called Parkinson’s. The Parkinson’s Recipe for Recovery® is your tarnish remover.

The Recipe helps bring your life back into balance by healing your soul, mind, and body. It helps you remove the toxins in your body so your organs are clean and functioning well. It helps you clean the toxins in your mind by calming your mind so your stress, anxiety, anger, frustration, worries and fears leave you and do not return. And, finally, it helps you to not be afraid to be the real you by opening your heart to yourself and the world fearlessly…and then your dopamine flows…and then your soul shines again.

Be the real you…new you/original you. To others who have known the old you, you will appear to be a completely new person. However, you will know that what they are seeing is the original you, the real you, and you will shine.

You are worth it!!!

All my best,


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17 Responses to Fighting Parkinson’s, and being your real self

  1. Paul says:

    I rarely comment on your postings. This is outstanding even for you!
    Thank you from my heart.


  2. Margee says:

    You have a gift. You are a gift. And you are a giver.
    I have heard it said, “LOVE must give.” I believe that that explains it.

  3. Lloyd says:

    That so touched me. You are so kind and thoughtful to share this beautiful message with us. And now with the suicide of the famous comedian, Robin Williams, many will believe that his diagnosis of Parkinson’s was the final straw that made him want to end his life. People are ashamed of having Parkinson’s and they hide it for as long as it can be concealed. My husband doesn’t understand WHY that is and frankly, I don’t know how to answer this. Is it because in this culture, old and shaky is not accepted? We teach people how to treat us. We ARE those shiny teapots. Thank you for your positive and uplifting thoughts.

  4. Waseema says:

    Howard, I just love the way you manage to convey this wonderful message to us. I completely agree with you and thank you for your generosity in sharing your thoughts. You are a constant source of inspiration.

  5. Mary says:

    Wow! What a post! Your gifts of understanding and compassion and their meaningful conveyance come through so clearly here. Amazing analogy, tarnish on the teapot, its beauty hidden temporarily and only by inaction. Beauty that is there to enjoy once again, with the required faith, attention and effort. Inspiring.

  6. jimmy says:

    como siempre infinita gratitud a tus palabras Howard, es luz bendita que nos anima , me permito decir lo siguiente para todos mis compañeros de viaje . Los santos maestros
    del pasado decían: «Si no sentimos aversión ni
    insatisfacción por nada, nuestra mente permanecerá serena. Cuando nuestra
    mente no esté alterada, nuestra energía no se alterará y, por lo tanto, no lo harán tampoco otros elementos del cuerpo. Gracias a esta paz y armonía, nuestra
    mente no se alterará, y de este modo la rueda de la felicidad seguirá girando.»……………
    Reflexiona sobre esto una y otra vez, y cultiva la experiencia de alegría y la paz mentales. Si lo hacéis, surgirá en
    ti una poderosa naturaleza o superabundancia de alegría mental, y eso hará que los sufrimientos de los sentidos
    se vuelvan casi imperceptibles. Así, tener una mente a la que el sufrimiento no puede lastimar es la característica de los
    que superan la enfermedad mediante la tolerancia.
    bendiciones para todos


    As always your words infinite gratitude to Howard, is blessed light that animates us. Let me say this to all my fellow travelers, as Saints have said, “If we do not feel dislike or dissatisfaction with anything, our mind will remain calm. When our mind is not impaired, we do not alter our energy and, therefore, it does not make ill other elements of the body. With this peace and harmony, our minds will not be changed, and thus the wheel keeps turning happiness. “……………
    Think about it over and over again, and cultivate the experience of happiness and mental peace. If you do, you will emerge in a strong mental nature or sheer joy, and that will make the suffering of the senses become almost imperceptible. Thus, having a mind that is not suffering cannot hurt is the characteristic of those who survive the disease through tolerance.
    blessings to all

  7. Helen C. says:

    I love that analogy, Howard! I also loved the one about the temporary mess when cleaning the swimming pool. Your posts are always a source of inspiration to stay the course. Thankyou.

  8. Lynn McIvor says:

    Who would like to join me for a cup of Howard’s tea? I bet the tea from that silver teapot is filled with compassion, love, caring and acceptance of ourselves and others. I can just imagine us sitting together sharing those feelings…….

  9. Lex says:

    Dear Howard,

    What you wrote is beautiful – and so true. Thank you for all you do for our community and for your loving soul.


  10. Karen In Ireland says:

    Truly Inspirational Howard! Love it love it love it!
    Yes Lynn would love to join you in a cup of Howard’s tea. ;-)
    Enjoyed Jimmy’s words of wisdom too.
    With Love & Gratitude
    Karen xxx

  11. Jane says:

    Thank you for the exquisite “spot of grace”.

  12. Melanie says:

    As usual Howard, the analogy is amazing!!!! This community is blessed with amazing analogies to help keep us on the path to recovery! Words cannot adequately describe the gratitude I feel to have you in my life, as I persevere through struggles of this journey! With much love and gratitude! Melanie

  13. Sally says:

    Thank you Howard.
    Your faith in recovery is invaluable.

  14. Looks like your post touched the hearts of many, Howard….so once again, my heart-full gratitude for your wise and inspiring words!

  15. judy says:

    Love the teapot analogy. A few years ago I journaled that I did not feel like me anymore, that I didn’t know who I was anymore. Little did I know that was the best place for me to be right then. Maybe that’s when the search for the real “me” began, the “me” I had never really known. Out with the tarnish, in with the beautiful, shining “me”! Thanx, Howard.

  16. Pingback: Fighting Parkinson’s, and being your real self, part 2 | Fighting Parkinson's Drug Free

  17. Helen says:

    Howard thank you I have been feeling this real me so much more in the last few months on a more deeper way than ever before. But I awoke tonight with a worry as I have travelled to Brisbane to see my meditation teacher There is a conference being held and I will have to see my sister there who I have had confrontation with in the past. She has mental health issues and can get very angry. I am scared of her. For a year it’s been a real relief to me not seeing her. I pray that the real me can stay strong in love and understanding I pray for a healing between us and that I can stay in peace. And kindness not fear. It may be my last big shift. Thank you for the teapot truth. Love helen

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