Fighting Parkinson’s, and living your life, not your symptoms

Ten years ago, I began doing the Parkinson’s Recipe for Recovery®. Of course, back then it did not have a name…it was just what I was doing. At the same time, I began keeping a hand-written Parkinson’s Daily Journal. Here is my October 10, 2009 journal entry, ten years ago today.

“10/10/09. Slept in. Woke up at 6:35. No improvement from yesterday, but not worse either. Sally has to work from 1-4 today, so it is not fun for her.

Genevieve went to a walk-a-thon for Alzheimer’s disease. After Sally went to work, Victoria and I went to Hyde Park, got treats for Cricket (our dog), and ice cream for Victoria. I think she had a fun time.

Genevieve was invited to a hockey game in the evening, and Sally and I watched “Enchanted” with Victoria. It is a very funny movie and was a great escape for a couple of hours.”

It was a Saturday, so I took the opportunity to sleep in. Apparently “up at 4” or “”up at 6:35” made no difference. Sally had to work every 7th Saturday, and this was one of them.

Except for me having Parkinson’s, this was just like any other Saturday in the Shifke household. This is an important point.

I have stressed many times, Parkinson’s is a part of your life. It is something going on temporarily while life moves forward. If you are living your Parkinson’s symptoms and good days and bad days are determined by how your tremors or other symptoms are changing, then to a large extent, you are missing life.

I heard a saying many years ago: There are three types of people in life, those who make things happen, those who watch things happen, and those who say, “what just happened?”

This is your life. Please take action and make things happen!

You are worth it!!!

All my best,


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17 Responses to Fighting Parkinson’s, and living your life, not your symptoms

  1. Karen in Ireland says:

    Hi Howard, you are early this week. :-). It still amazes me that you get up at 4am!!!! I would be like a Rottweiler if I got up that early haha.
    One of my daily affirmations is
    “I am as God created me” so I try to behave as if that were so, by challenging myself to do things I used to do, just basic things like washing the dishes, as standing for ten minutes would be a challenge. Feeding the wild cats that are around as that requires bending down which is a challenge. I view it as me reminding my brain “remember you CAN do this.” It’s amazing how empowered I feel at achieving these little tasks.
    I hope my fellow warriors are all in a good headspace .
    Big love to all. (Jimmy great to see you posting again)
    Karen xx

    • Chris Meyer says:

      The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Congratulations, Karen, sounds like you are well under way!

      With love, blessings and much appreciation for all your wise comments,

      Chris in Wisconsin

      • Karen in Ireland says:

        Awwwww thank you Chris, that is really sweet. Ditto my friend, I enjoy your posts, especially the humerous ones .
        Big love to you . Hope you still cycling that bike! xx

  2. Margaret says:

    Hi Howard and fellow warriors
    Yes I am worth it, we are worth it!!!!

    Thank you!

  3. Tery and Werni says:

    Great advice👍Thanks dear Howard, it‘s worth to make things happen…. 👍🙏

  4. Chris Meyer says:

    I’ve come to the conclusion that the dreadful Monday morning blues is just an invitation to the most exciting and rewarding endeavor any of us ever engages in: taking the ego to the mat!

    Love and blessings to all you wonderful guys and gals,

    Chris in Wisconsin

    • Chris Meyer says:

      Of course, the next thing Howard’s going to say to me is, ‘Taking the ego to the mat? – Sounds like a struggle!”
      OK, so I’m going to take the ego to the mat by letting – whoosh – go of all life’s ‘important’ stuff.

      Further love and blessings to all.

      Hogging the blog in Wisconsin,


      • Karen In Ireland says:

        I love the hoggers Chris, keeps the chat going .xx oh God I have to go through the joy of proving that I am not a robot again. I’m rubbish at spotting what they ask me to spot. Ha ha. xx

  5. Dustin Anderson says:

    It sounds like renovating my old house in all my shakiness is OK ? That’s kind of what I was thinking. Last night while sewing (which at this time is a huge pain in the @&&) Curtains I realize that I think the standard at which I am doing things is higher than I did when I had perfect health. I am way more patient and certainly a lot slower and thoughtful.

    This rich life experiences moving forward.

    Love and health everybody

    • Chris Meyer says:

      Sounds really good, Dustin! I’m going to take inspiration from you and start remodeling my old house (i.e. My body) by adding some light push-ups and sit-ups into my daily routines.

      Best regards,


  6. jimmy says:



    Hello Great post Howard

  7. Larry Simpson says:

    Hi All,
    Keeping the light burning and not judging, but simply enjoying the light. We are perfect in every way. I have a terrible fight with constant judging of myself. I am working on it by catching it when it is happening and setting goals without the negative judgement. Bless us all, love will show the way! Thank you Howard!!

  8. paul says:

    omg Howard
    this stuff really works i have been more or less be doing the recovery exercises for awhile but in the last two days I have noticed a change in my approach.
    Instead of allowing the usual pd mind to run the show; I found myself like a young child just doing the exercises for the love of it. I felt so happy! My body was raging with symptoms and I could barely walk but something inside says this is the key.
    I feel as if I was before only going through the motions and not really believing I was worth it.
    Needless to say Howard I am so grateful for your courage and love and care ty

    Also I had a thought ; would you or have you considered doing a video of all the exercises so we can follow along?

    • Howard says:

      Hi Paul,

      You are welcome. You sound great. I have looked into a full-length Recipe video in the past and the quoted prices made it cost-prohibitive. Sorry.

      Love and blessings,


    • Chris Meyer says:

      Paul –

      This has been discussed a lot under the idea of, “I get to do the recipe,” instead of, “I have to do the recipe.” But I like your added sense of childlike playfulness and joy: Not just, “I get to do the recipe,” but, “Hot damn, I GET to do the recipe!”

      Thanks for that, I’m going to give this a whack tonight.

      With much appreciation,


  9. Denean Ragland says:

    Good Day to each of you,
    I’m my husband’s partner in this. We are doing the exercises but I must admit not as enthusiastically as we should. I feel that we struggle with making the right food choices also. I wish I had a tad of Sally’s knowledge in cooking. I find myself falling into the same old bad choices of food. Trying to do better for Mike and myself. Definitely discovered we are sugar addicts- ugh!! So this is been a battle. Believing in the healing power of God and the wondrous bodies he has gave us. Hugs to you all!

    • Chris Meyer says:

      Greetings Denean and Mike. Sounds like you’ve got the right idea about food, and the exercises will become more and more natural. If you’re not already doing coaching with Howard, I highly recommend it. This is a fairly comprehensive healing path and a good guide comes in handy – Howard’s a great guide.

      Best wishes and good luck. I look forward to seeing you on the blog.

      I am also very blessed to have a great partner, my wife Ruth, in this adventure,


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