Yesterday I got my mountain bike out of winter storage, inflated the tires, and went for a ride! It was exhilarating! No doubt, my brain was in dopamine and serotonin producing mode!
Since January, I have been undertaking my recovery protocol and daily regimen with renewed vigour and enthusiasm. I have also been focusing heavily on meditation and qigong, and I have added breathing and body language exercises.
I learned two breathing exercises that are primarily meant to raise our vibrational frequency and stimulate the production of serotonin, oxytocin and dopamine to help overcome anxiety.
I recently weaned off Zoloft [sertraline HCl]. I started taking it in December along with Sinemet due to the severe anxiety and loss of balance and mobility I had been experiencing. Prior to that, I had experienced the symptoms of PD medication-free for 17 years.
I am grateful to say that this combination of medications [Sinemet and Zoloft] restored my balance and mobility to the point where I could function again, and eliminated the anxiety. I am also grateful to tell you that the weaning-off process went really well, with no major complications.
One of the most frequent questions I am asked, is how to get off medication. Be it PD meds, anxiety meds or both, there is a genuine desire to be medication free, and thus, free of side-effects and the inevitable loss of efficacy of the medication … it is well-known that over time PD meds lose their efficacy, eventually becoming completely ineffective, the outcome of which is quite grim. Moreover, for the vast majority of people experiencing the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, and who believe recovery is possible, recovery will involve coming off medication at some point, and this too quite frankly can be a disconcerting prospect. It is akin to a drug addict going through withdrawal.
I just finished reading The Root of All Healing by Misa Hopkins and it is an excellent read for anyone experiencing a chronic health condition. The book could be particularly helpful for those who have no experience with natural health practices.
Ms. Hopkins, an American, overcame MS using the strategies she discusses in the book, so she has credibility. Her attitude and approach is very much in alignment with mine, so I found it very reassuring.
Her recovery protocol includes meditation, spending time in nature, creative expression, laughter, singing, acceptance, asking questions, belief in our inner power and self-compassion. In fact, she says true healing begins with self-compassion.
Her number one recommendation for people experiencing Parkinson’s is spending time in nature. She says the natural energies in nature balance our circadian rhythms which in turn, balances neurotransmitter and hormone production in our bodies.
Like me, Hopkins believes our health conditions have purpose. They are our life work, she says.
You won’t go wrong reading this book! It is available on Amazon.
A few years ago [I don’t recall exactly when], I noticed that driving intensified my symptoms. Not long after that, I noticed that my symptoms got worse even when I was a passenger in the car.
Last week, I took a rather long driving trip to visit family and friends, including my mentally handicapped brother who is in declining health. Every day involved a significant amount of time in the car, including nine hours on day one and six hours on the last day.
This past November, Mari urged me to get more dedicated to my daily recovery protocol. It’s a regimine I created three years ago before I retired from teaching martial arts and moved to Manitoulin Island. At the time, it consisted of 15 physical activities that were intended to support my recovery protocol; activities such as walking, doing push-ups and practising Qigong. I created an Excel spreadsheet to track my progress each day, putting a check mark beside each activity I completed.
Recently I was walking from the house down to the lake to enjoy the view and the serenity. About halfway down the steps, it suddenly occurred to me that in that moment, I felt normal! My balance was fine [it usually is when I’m walking], there was no freezing, no trembling and no clenching in my hands. My gait was normal as well!
I am rereading Wayne Dyer’s book, change your thoughts change your life, living the wisdom of the Tao. Verse 2 addresses the concept of contrast…Long is defined by short, the high by the low.
Last summer, after retiring from teaching karate, I decided to take up golf again. It has been challenging! Not only am I that much older, I have some physical challenges to manage… loss of balance, trembling, freezing and loss of dexterity [particularly on the left side]. I have also lost a lot of strength, so I don’t hit the ball nearly as far as I used to. On the flipside, I tend to hit the ball much straighter!