Fighting Parkinson’s, and remembering my Mom on her 87th birthday

Today would have been my Mom’s 87th birthday. She passed away 14 and 1/2 years ago. As you know, having seen her struggles and the sad ending to the life of a beautiful, kind, loving being, I was highly motivated to take a different path than the one being offered and to solve Parkinson’s Disease. To my Mom, Lorraine, Happy Birthday! You have helped us all.

My Mom had Parkinson’s for 24 years before she passed away in 2007. Today would have been her 87th birthday. Mom, you were a wonderful wife, mother and grandmother, and a kind-hearted soul. You are missed by all.

Here is an excerpt from my Parkinson’s daily journal {October 6, 2009}:

“Up at 4:00am. Peas and carrots for breakfast. After breakfast, I talked with Sally and completely lost it and cried and cried. Some days, she must feel really miserable being with me. She held me and I felt better after we talked…Mom would have turned 75 today.”

Parkinson’s is a terrible disease for those who have it, and it is equally a terrible disease for those who love and care for those who have it. It is very difficult to stay on the path to recovery when we are riding the physical and emotional roller coaster of day-to-day living. However, we are living, and how we live is up to us. Sally helped me a lot with this understanding.

Many people believe conceptually that they got the disease when they were diagnosed. I would imagine that you were feeling something was wrong for quite some time before ending up at the Parkinson’s specialist and/or neurologist to finally get diagnosed. As I have mentioned in the past, after I recovered and the calluses disappeared from my fingertips, my fingerprint log in to my computer no longer worked. I had set the fingerprint log in 18 months prior to being diagnosed, and I have no idea how much prior in time to that I had developed the calluses.

The point I am trying to make is this: you did not get Parkinson’s the day you got diagnosed, and it is not going to go away the day after the diagnosis. The captain of the Titanic only saw the tip of the iceberg, if that, but an ice mountain had been growing for a long time beneath the surface. When Parkinson’s finally breaks to the surface, there are a mountain of layers below that need to be dealt with to beat the disease.

You have to decide that you want to win this battle, and you have to chip away at it a piece at a time. To succeed, you need to get on the path to recovery and have faith in yourself. Remember that you have the power to heal yourself. Your Parkinson’s knows it and tries to convince you otherwise. Be strong and resist the nonsense your mind is telling you. Instead, do the soul, mind, and body recovery processes of the Parkinson’s Recipe for Recovery® and tell yourself, “I have the power to heal myself.”

On this, my Mom’s birthday, take a moment and draw some inspiration from her. My Mom was a special lady. She was the kind of Mom who would have traded places with any of her children when we were ill just to relieve us of our suffering. For 24 years with Parkinson’s, she simply tried to pretend that she was not suffering even though her suffering was apparent to anybody who saw her. She did not want to feel like a burden or have anybody worrying about her. Mom, you never were a burden, and all of us loved you and had compassion for you and for your situation.

To all of you, I share the same sentiment: You are not a burden, and all of the rest of us here love you and have compassion for you and your situation. We are a world-wide, multi-cultural family filled with love and compassion for each other and for ourselves. 

You are fighting a difficult fight, so please draw some inspiration from each other and from yourself. Be inspired by yourself for the courage you are showing on this journey to recovery. You are taking the path least traveled, and having been there myself, I am inspired by each and every one of you. 

Happy Birthday Mom! I love you!

Happy life to all of you.

You are worth it!!!

All my best,


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25 Responses to Fighting Parkinson’s, and remembering my Mom on her 87th birthday

  1. Alison says:

    Dear Howard,
    Thank you for your message to us all.
    I guess your mother suffered a lot but this enabled her to leave you a wonderful
    guideline as to how to deal with PD. She must be smiling down on you now.
    Lots of love

  2. Margaret says:

    Awww Happy birthday Lorraine!
    Sounds like she was such a beautiful soul, we are very grateful to her as without her there would be no Howard or no recipe!

  3. Julie R says:

    I am crying tears of gratitude to you, Howard, and to your dear mother. Thank you to you both for your example of courage! Love, Julie

  4. Ray says:

    Your mum would have been proud of you Howard. Thank you for your continued support. Returning much love.

  5. Tery and Werni says:

    Happy Birthday dearest Lorraine, you are the base and Howard planted his
    healing plants on it, and now we are benefitting from it very much!! We are very,
    very grateful to both of you.

  6. Graham S says:

    Look after yourself and yours Howard. Enjoy the good memories, loss is not easy, even time does not take away all the pain. Sending you a global hug from England,- top man!


  7. Mary M says:

    Happy Birthday Lorraine. RIP

  8. Val H says:

    I found this very poignant and affecting on so many levels: the love you had for your mum and what it conjured up about my mum, who also had Parkinson’s; the life your mother missed out on; and her radiance that still exists for you.
    It also pulled me up because I have been feeling completely hopeless these past few weeks and didn’t even want to connect with my Parkinson’s family on the website.
    God bless you, Lorraine. Thank you for bringing Howard into the world and being his inspiration for giving the world his Recipe.
    Howard, thank you for the reminder that how we live is up to us. About 70% of the time, I would prefer to die. Yesterday, it was up to about 85%. Today, it was a beautiful cold, clear and sunny day and I tottered to my local park. The river was burbling through it after recent heavy rain and I saw a magnificent silver-leaved tree shimmering like mercury in the breeze and a robin sitting in the cleft of a tree stump. It was singing merrily and my heart was glad and about 80% of me wanted to live.
    On the way out, a worker from the city council’s parks and open spaces department straightened up from his fork to greet me: ‘Good morning. Have you had a stroke?’
    Funny, eh? But then, so is having carrots and peas for breakfast!

  9. Ola says:

    Thank you Lorraine for leaving us a gift of hope and recovery! RIP! … and of course the biggest gift is Howard! I am GRATEFUL!!!

    My newest mantra is …being present where my feet are and enjoying my journey of life💗 thank you all for being my companions!

    Fondest Love,


  10. Rick says:

    Yes Parkinson’s is a tricky disease and especially when you compare yourself to how you used to be , but it could be a lot worse. I feel very fortunate because l have all of you helping , we all can win this. What I’m learning on this journey is you must completely believe that you can win how ever long it takes. And yes I sometimes don’t feel like doing the exercises especially in the morning but I keep going because l want to recover. Thank you for sharing Howard about your mum . Thinking of you all fighting for that finishing line , love to you all from Australia 🇦🇺 😀

  11. Helen G says:

    What a wonderful compassionate human being you are to love and understand your mum so well. She must have been a wonderful woman. Her heart would be pouring love on you, as yours does on her. Courage and kindness and 💖 your mum sounds beautiful. Love to you and Sally.

  12. Dora says:

    Thank you Howard, sure your mom is looking down on you with pride. You are an inspiration even if some of us would not want peas and carrots for breakfast 😂 . RIP Lorraine, and thank you for sharing Howard with us. Blessings to you and your family.

  13. Roger says:

    Howard thank you for the introduction! The strength of her soul is still shining!!! Love to all from Chicago!

  14. Nancy says:

    Grateful for Mrs. Shifke and for her persistent son! She lived so that others might have less suffering, especially Howard and his subscribers ♥️. What great gifts 🎁!

    • Dianna S says:

      Oh how grand it is to have a mother’s love. Thank you Howard for sharing your love for your mom with us. I am grateful to her for the gift of you in my life. Let’s drink a toast to Howard and his mom for illuminating our lives so eloquently. May love and faith cancel out fear and doubt in our daily rounds. I learned that from a Master with the initials HS. Love to all.
      Dianna in Wyoming

  15. Venkateswara R says:

    Thanks to Lorraine for giving us Howard who has been a great support to many.

  16. Rick says:

    24years is a long time having Parkinson’s plus being heavily medicated, bless her soul. Your mum must have been a strong lady to endure that. We are internally grateful for your mother which was part of your motivation which gave us a cure. My apologies Howard for my last post as I spoke about myself more when it was really in honour of your mum. I guess we don’t always get it right 😀😀

  17. Judy G says:

    Howard, You are the greatest inspiration for me. I have your book (I started to underline the key concepts and ideas and the entire book is all marked up!) My love to you and Sally. At this time, I seem to be…”running very fast to stay in the same place”..(c.Wells). Best. Judy G.

  18. Rabindar says:

    All mothers are special. The experiences Howard’s mother went through with Parkinson’s, resulted in Howard sharing his own experiences, which led to the Recovery Recipe for us to use and appreciate. Thanks for sharing.

  19. Chris M says:

    Yes, Howard, happy birthday to your mother Lorraine, and for this inspirational post she inspired!

    Take good heart, everyone!!

  20. Paula says:

    All I can say is thank you everybody.

  21. Lucy B. says:

    “Happy life to all of you.” What a beautiful and simple wish. It touched my heart. Thanks, Howard!

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