When I joined The Invigorated Community on line discussion group for those diagnosed with Parkinson’s and their caregivers, I received this message. IT has been worthwhile for me to re-read.
|I met the woman who changed my life forever one month into my professional physical therapy career. |
She walked, slowly and timidly, back to my treatment room for her initial evaluation with very little trace of emotion on her face.
Once she was settled comfortably in her chair, she looked up and said:
“When I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, my doctor told me I’d get worse over time and likely be in a wheelchair in 5 years. That was 3 years ago.
Since then I’ve stopped walking with my husband in the evenings because I feel so unsteady and I’m terrified of falling again. I’m tired all the time. My back and shoulders ache and my right arm is so weak that I had to give up doing my own laundry and cleaning the house like I used to.
I want to be able to take care of myself and get back to doing the things I used to do, but Parkinson’s won’t let me. I honestly don’t know what you can do for me, but my doctor told me I should come, so here I am.”
This was the first person I had ever treated with a Parkinson’s diagnosis and her story immediately sparked a fire in my heart.
How could her doctor be so sure of her fate?
So, I asked her to give me 30 days to prove to her that she didn’t have to succumb to the disempowering belief that there was nothing to do but take her medications, get her affairs in order, and pray for a cure.
Fortunately, she agreed.
We spent 3 days a week together, and she worked hard . Bike intervals… balance pads… walking drills… squats (so many squats!)… twisting and bending in all directions… and, of course, exercise homework for the days she didn’t see me…
Until we reached our 30-day mark.
Not only was she back to walking a mile each evening with her husband, but her back and shoulder pain was also gone. She had enough energy to do her laundry and was regularly hosting their family and friends at their home she was able to clean herself.
She looked at me, smiling, and said:
“I never thought I’d be able to do these things again. You gave me my life back.”
Heart . Explosion .
Immediately I knew that this was where I needed to be.
I don’t tell you this story to brag about myself or to proclaim myself some mystical healer.
I tell you because I want you to know this:
If you’ve been told that there’s nothing you can do but take your medication, get your affairs in order, and wait for a cure, you don’t have to believe it.
What follows is a letter I wrote that I wish I could have given you on the day you were diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.
|Big hugs,Dr. Sarah King, PT, DPT|
Founder of Invigorate PT & Wellness
“If I could turn back the clock and write a letter to every single one of my clients on the day they were diagnosed with Parkinson’s, this is what the letter would say.”
“Dearest Friend, [Her words are so uplifting and beneficial… check back tomorrow, for the ‘rest of the story’.]