As my hands have stiffened, I have needed to adapt: Because my legs are white & streaked with bulging varicose veins, I’d always wore Suntan support hose or long pants. When I could no longer get the nylons on, I wore long skirts with elastic waists, like my slacks. But I was having a difficult time parting with my favorite knee length skirts. I finally realized; if I purchased the support nylons in queen size… I can get them over my heels and on!
My biggest battle with my body and mind as I progress with Parkinson’s disease is prioritizing:
Contending with what I should do and what I don’t want to do. (like exercise)
Weeding out projects that I really want to do but know I shouldn’t do. (like weeding the flower beds)
Identifying what I can let go of. (I know!! I am a pack rat!) (& what if I experience a miracle! 🙂
I know I posted the following picture before… But I love its message & it seemed to belong in this post about being a Queen.
For my grandchildren, I am going to type 24 stories from our experiences. This task will consume much of my time during the next month…or more. So, I may not post to my blog as frequently as I have in the past. So I am giving you, my dear readers an assignment: Start being kinder to yourself, following these four suggestions: Season’s Greetings
‘Being kind to yourself is one of the best things you can do for yourself. But it’s also the one thing that is most often neglected or something that some people may feel guilty about doing.”
1. Speak To Yourself As You Would To Your Friends
“Before you speak, think it over: if you wouldn’t say it to any of your closest friends, don’t say it to yourself.”
“What you can do the next time you find wallowing in negative self-talk is to get a pen and paper, and draw a box with two rows and five columns. Label them: Thought, Emotion, Evidence, New Thought, and New Emotion.“
“Break down your negative thoughts into each of the first three columns and formulate positive thoughts out of them. Repeat this exercise every day until you form the habit of stopping negative thinking in its tracks and replacing them with kinder ones.”
2. Exercise Mindfulness
“It’s not only negative self-talk that harms your inner being. Self-judgement also hurts your self-worth, even if you aren’t consciously doing it. You will become what you believe you are.”
“Mindfulness exercises help you defeat these thoughts of self-judgment and ideas of defeat and replace them with self-compassion. Consider your thoughts and emotions without ruling them out as “good” or “bad”. Examine them with mindful awareness without judging it – don’t try to dismiss them, but don’t dwell on them either.”
“Feelings and thoughts come and go, and they change. Do not build your identity on these fleeting things. This too shall pass.”
3. Forgive Yourself
“You did the best you could with the cards you were dealt. The lessons you picked up from your mentors, your environment, your experiences, and your physical and mental health all influence the way you treat others and yourself.”
“Self-forgiveness isn’t making excuses or pretending you didn’t make a mistake. It means showing yourself compassion and recognizing that you’re only human. People all make mistakes, sometimes tragically huge ones. But the more important thing is making amends and avoiding the same mistakes in the future.”
4. Stop Comparing Yourself To Others
“You may think you know someone from what you see on Facebook, but in reality, you really don’t know the whole story. People tend to use social media to show the idealized versions of their lives. Behind a perfectly manicured lawn are nightly fights between your old coworker and her husband. Behind extravagant trips around the world are piling credit card debts.”
“Don’t go down the rabbit hole of social media. Stop comparing yourself with other people. What you can do is un-follow people whose lives trigger strong negative emotions with you. You’re being kinder to yourself by removing these unrealistic benchmarks and redirect your focus on becoming a better person.”
During the years John and I were ‘professional parents’ we had sixteen special people who, at various times, became one of our family members. We, and our children, have many fond memories which frequently come back to our remembrance. For instance… the first thing Debbie said, to anyone she met, every day of the year, and with great anticipation was… “Birthday’s coming up!!… May 25th!!”
Yesterday was Oct. 25th! And I realized it is just two months till another gift giving occasion arrives. On Christmas, Christians commemorate the gift of God’s Son, by the tradition of giving gifts to those we love. We all love to give gifts, and although some may say they don’t want to receive… I believe, on some level, everyone has a need to receive a gift. It doesn’t need to be wrapped in a package with a pretty bow, to be appreciated. It doesn’t even need to cost a lot to be appreciated… For example, a grandson wrote a poem, in tribute to his grandfather, and framed it as a gift for Father’s Day. It was heartfelt, touching and brought tears to our eyes. (Happy tears)
Still… I’m running short on ideas… With over 30 ‘big people’ and over 24 younger people that I’d like to gift to… Perhaps I can recall some stories from the past that I can share with them? PERHAPS you will have a suggestion you’d like to share with me?
“Here is a set of quick neural exercises and fast workout for maintaining and strengthening the Cranial Nerves, to support our health, growth, and restoration, and assist in long term progressive symptom reduction.”
[I couldn’t transfer the video, so what follows is the url for the entire article]
“1. Watch and regularly review the video, to ensure a good understanding and improve ability to visualize the specific muscles which we are seeking to innervate with each exercise.”
[I viewed the video, and although it shows the muscles … and perhaps shows the good doctors knowledge and understanding of said muscles, I think we can all follow the guide below, even without viewing it.] your choice. 🙂
“2. Take a few minutes to perform the exercise routine just once or twice a day, do not overdo, especially initially – less is more, consistent practice every day is more important.”
“3. Hold each expression made for a few seconds, and concentrate (embody) the feelings and sensations created, then relax face before moving on to next.”
“4. If particular exercises are difficult to perform, use fingers to assist, or close eyes and simply visualize/imagine making the expression and the muscle movement – even micro-twitches will be beneficial.”
1. Look in the mirror while performing the workout, and consciously notice/observe changes to face.
2. Gently place finger tips on each muscle which is being innervated.
3. Rotate daily between exercising left side only, right side only, and both sides.
4. Find a partner/guide with a healthy Social Engagement/Cranial Nervous System, and follow/mirror/mimic their facial expressions as they go through the routine, exploiting the Mirror Neurons which fire when watching other people move.
FACIAL NERVE EXERCISES
1. Wrinkle forehead. 2. Close eyelids gently and relax face. 3. Close eyes tightly. 4. Draw eyebrows down and inward. 5. Frown and wrinkle top of nose. 6. Flare nostrils out. 7. Draw nose downwards with septum. 8. Close lips tight together. 9. Purse lips as if kissing, 10. Purse lips as if whistling. 11. Puff up cheeks, then slowly blow out breath. 12. Draw corners of the mouth outwards with lips closed. 13. Draw corners of mouth upwards with lips closed. 14. Draw corners of mouth downwards with lips closed. 15. Open lips and show upper teeth by curling/lifting upper lip, opening nostrils. 16. Starting with lips closed, push lower lip out as if pouting. 17. Open lips and show lower teeth, by pulling lower lip down. 18. Smile broadly, showing teeth. 19. Raise ears (for most people this will require manual assistance with fingers). 20. Draw ears back (“). 21. Draw ears up and forwards (“).
Some people like to do jigsaw puzzles while listening to conference. John and I have found a project which gives us hand exercise as we weave plastic bags (plarn) into mats, while we listen to Saturday conference. We also work with the plarn as we listen to the nightly, round table discussions of the scriptures on BYU TV.
In case you wondered, I did the math… and I think we put around 30 hours into the making of a mat.
Do you ever feel like “Honestly, toasters come with more instructions than a diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease “? perhaps the following link will help.
This is a link to a 55 page document produced by the MJFF with ‘real talk for patients and families’ exploring everything from learning the diagnosis, the process of accepting and learning about , deciding when to reveal your diagnosis to others. It covers seven tenents:
I love it when grandchildren are able to help out their grandma. Lance helped me with a technical problem today. I couldn’t get my article on progression of symptoms to show up on the front page of my blog, like I envisioned. But he worked his magic. 🙂
BUT… those who have clicked to ‘follow’ my blog, receive my posts in an email… so unless I share the information here, they won’t know to return to the home page. The page title is Transparency
My husband, John, is simply the most awesome #1 support.
When I said I wanted a Rhoades Car, for bicycling. he didn’t flinch. Before our solar assisted vehicle arrived, he had installed a ramp up to the double doors and moved things around so we can use part of his shop for a garage for the Rhoades Car.
I read: “Sauna use has also been shown to increase brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). BDNF is like fertilizer for our brains. Indeed, increased BDNF can improve cognitive function and memory.” (Dr John Day)
“Another benefit of infrared sauna… Detoxification of Chemicals and Heavy Metals… The skin is a major detox organ, and sweating through the skin is a critical human detox function, yet most people don’t sweat regularly or enough. The body is very effective at eliminating toxins via the skin (and the liver, and the poo), but the skin side of things only really works if you make your body sweat. But many of us sit in air-conditioned indoor environments all day, and even gyms with temperature control can be a tough place to work up a serious sweat. So in these type of situations, you completely miss out on a major source of toxin elimination: the skin.”
When I read about the benefits of infrared sauna… John didn’t flinch. When our very own infrared sauna arrived, he immediately set to work setting it up out in his shop, although it further cramped his work space. Additionally, he sits in the sauna and reads to me until our allotted time is up.
So… when I read Ben Greenfield said: “People who had four to seven sauna sessions of at least 20 minutes each, had the greatest benefits”, I thought…it would be much more conducive to daily use if we move the sauna inside our home. John came up with the perfect location. BUT… it will require significant effort. He suggested, we could remove the large garden tub from our master bath (since we always opt for the shower, anyway). I love the idea and convenience such a transition will provide.