Fighting Parkinson’s, and I was just like you

From time to time people have commented to me that it is hard for them to picture me with Parkinson’s. I am healthy, smile all the time, and I am filled with love, joy, compassion and gratitude. Today, I will prove to all of you that once upon a time, I was just like you.

Twelve 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 September 30, 2009 journal entry, twelve years ago today.

“09/30/09. Got up at 4. This is my worst day so far. Hard to get off the bed and whole body is tight and aching. Hard to get dressed. Hard to get downstairs. I follow the same routine every morning – out of bed, get dressed, go downstairs, use bathroom and put on contacts, go to kitchen and turn on espresso machine. I look at the clock as the machine takes 10 minutes to warm up.

Every day the clock shows 4:04 or 4:05. Today it showed 4:08. I am hopeful that the slowdown is a result of the Qigong performed yesterday. I have found that releasing toxins always makes me worse before I get better. I can only hope this will be the same.

Performed the Kidney Qigong. Kidneys are aching, which is a good thing.

At 10am, I started feeling a little lightheaded so I ate a banana and the extra vegetables Sally set aside after she prepared our lunch. She told me they could be my “elevens-ees.” They were my “second breakfast.” [“elevens-ees” and “second breakfast” are Lord of the Rings references to extra meals].”

I have to tell you all that I laughed out loud when I read this today. Then I read it to Sally and she laughed out loud, too. In the beginning of this journal entry, I wrote, “This is my worst day so far.” When I woke up that morning, I had been doing the Recipe two days only. What was I expecting after two days? To be feeling better? Oh, my!

And, it was a big eye-opener to read how much of my perfectionist adrenaline-mind was controlling me in the early parts of my recovery: “I follow the same routine every morning – out of bed, get dressed, go downstairs, use bathroom and put on contacts, go to kitchen and turn on espresso machine. I look at the clock as the machine takes 10 minutes to warm up. Every day the clock shows 4:04 or 4:05. Today it showed 4:08.”

So, my friends, feel free to laugh with me, and to laugh at me. Also, depending upon your own personal idiosyncrasies, maybe you will choose to laugh at yourself as well. I highly recommend it as it is very liberating to not take ourselves too seriously.

As you can see, we are no different. It could not be any more clear that in my private Parkinson’s Daily Journal, I felt the need to be perfect even when nobody would be reading it except me.

I also suffered from a ridiculously insufferable ego mind. For the ten years prior to having Parkinson’s, we did holistic healing around the house, and that is part of why I knew that I could heal from Parkinson’s. Holistic healing and Traditional Chinese Medicine work — you have to choose the correct things to do, and you have to be willing to put in the time, day after day to lay a strong foundation and build a recovery upon that foundation.

That is part of why my own words thrown in my face today made me laugh. Even with the knowledge that healing from Parkinson’s was going to take a long time, at the beginning of the third day, I wrote, “This is my worst day so far.”

In the end, I was blessed with the happiest of endings. Since you can see that in the beginning that I was just like you, then I invite you to know that in the end, you can be just like me…blessed with the happiest of endings, a full recovery from Parkinson’s.

You will be healthy, smile all the time, and be filled with love, joy, compassion and gratitude. Plus, you will be able to preface your own hero’s journey story with the words that raise the eyebrows of your listeners, “When I had Parkinson’s….”

You can do it!

You are worth it!!!

All my best,


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13 Responses to Fighting Parkinson’s, and I was just like you

  1. Rick says:

    Hello everyone, 8 months 23 days now doing the recovery, my symptoms are raging, but not uncontrollable, walking slightly better and not as stiff, it’s giving me a good fight for my money, but I’m feeling more determined and positive getting over the line. Thanks everyone and thank you Howard 😀😀😀

    • Ray says:

      I am just ahead of you Rick and my symptoms have been raging too for some time. We must be doing it right. We will hang in together brother. I was told PD doesn’t suddenly deteriorate and we know the gentle exercises don’t cause harm so Howard must be right. We will prevail. 😃

      • Rick says:

        Thanks Ray , had people around for dinner last night and my left arm wouldn’t stop shaking because I’m talking more, couldn’t sit in corner and say nothing could I lol . After a good night sleep my shaking settled, interesting thing is left shoulder that morning wasn’t as tight doing my recipe . Also had a spinal massage for 1 hour and boy that settles things ! Right behind you 😇

  2. Dora says:

    “When I had Parkinson’s.” Oh how much I want to be able to say that some day. Hoping that with the recipe and other modalities that I practice I will be able to say that too. Thank you for your encouragement

  3. Margaret says:

    How encouraging! Thank you Howard!
    I can certainly relate “Worst day ever-LOl” only I think I added “Poor me!!!” to it,
    this morning before I caught myself and remembered what you have said about extra stiffness and tremor being related to healing.
    Thank you for the bright beacon of Love, Hope and Encouragement you are Howard. I really do now see recovery on the horizon
    Love and healing to all my fellow warriors

  4. Julie R says:

    Thank you, Howard, for this “reality check”. It gives us hope to know that you had “worst days ever” too and that you survived to tell the world that you healed yourself from Parkinson’s. And we will too!

  5. Roger says:

    “When I had Parkinsons” I LOVE that!!!!!
    Good healing to all my fellow warriors!!!

  6. Pamela says:

    I had two great days and this morning I woke after a restless night of sleep and I was stiff and my left shoulder hurts and I started going down that negative thinking adrenaline mind path. Now that I read your blog, Howard, I will remind myself that when I have some better times and I do more, PD tries to scare me back into hopelessness and today I choose to trust I am going in the right direction and will be able to wake up with hope and continued healing. Although challenging, I know in my Spirit that I much more than these symptoms.

  7. Paula says:

    I have been doing the recipe for 1 year, 5 months. I am following it to the best of my abilities. Talking to God a lot. Trying to be grateful and accepting. I get to ride my bicycle. I’m very grateful for that. There are other emotional things happening in my life now. Trying to accept but it’s difficult. I pray for the day that I can say, “when I had Parkinson’s.” I enjoy reading everybody’s comments. I’m ready to start adding mine. May we all make it to the other side.

  8. Bebe M says:

    My salute to you all. I have been doing the chi gong with Cora Lee but I need to step up my game.

  9. Rabindar says:

    Thanks Howard for sharing your initial experiences of your journey to full recovery. One day, I too hope to say “When I had Parkinson’s….”😋

  10. Chris says:

    I have started an aggressive gratitude campaign in which I stuff my brain with thank you all the time.
    Parkinson’s countered with a constant patience attack. So I retaliated with beans, nuts, and dried fruit. Take that Parkinson’s!
    Should make for great stories in my post-Parkinson’s days!

  11. Ola says:

    Hi Howard, you not only made me laugh, but it made me feel normal! Lol ….. talking about being normal, I must be getting better because nobody offers me any help or assistance at the grocery checkout! Lol!!!
    What if one day I will say, “when I had Parkinson’s,” and I was near the end of my recovery where shops assistants stop offering me help!

    Love to all

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