22 Nov 2011 by Chris Boughton
It always amazes me the excesses that some people go to in celebration of Christmas with total disregard to the prevailing economic climate. I guess apart from the historic religious connections and celebrations there are all the issues concerning the distraction from the stresses of our everyday lives and the associated feel good factor. At the moment I personally have more than enough distraction from my life with Parkinson’s disease (PD). I have submitted two essays (1,000 words each; one for history and one for sociology) in the past month and I have two more to write and submit before we break for the Christmas holiday period.
I was concerned when I first embarked on this course that I would be seen as just an old man with PD and that I would feel isolated by this. The reality is totally the opposite. PD struck brutally at college one day earlier this week, with my back going into a very painful spasm. It was impossible to concentrate or study and I was forced to go home halfway through the lesson. Later that evening one of the other students scanned and emailed numerous hand-outs to me, totally unprompted.
11 Nov 2011 by Meg Pinfield
Gradually, with the onset of Parkinson’s disease (PD), he has simplified his wardrobe further. Nowadays he relies on jogging pants, polo shirts, baggy socks, and zip-up, slipper-like boots – whatever the occasion! This certainly helps me, and the other carers, when assisting him to dress and undress. It also means that he can retain some independence and take himself to the loo. Trousers with hooks, zips or buttons would be too difficult. Although he has no hand tremors, he does have a certain stiffness in his hands, so anything requiring dexterity is difficult for him, including eating.
07 Nov 2011 by Briony Cooke
While we were admiring the condition of these medieval battle-dresses, it occurred to me how wearing a coat of armour must be hard work and similar to my daily experiences when I am “off”. I explained that walking while being “off” (or parky) felt like stumbling through tar on the deck of a cross-channel ferry in a force nine gale wearing a coat of armour. He found that staggering.
“Wearing off” is not entirely predictable, but usually occurs between three and four hours after taking medication. I have a 20-minute warning then gradually the symptoms of Parkinson's disease (PD) creep over me like a vice slowly gripping my shoulders and then working their way down my back.
03 Nov 2011 by Chris Boughton
My younger son is currently running at least 6 miles, twice a week, after work, in preparation for a half-marathon to raise money for the Cure Parkinson’s Trust. He has never done anything like this before and will readily admit he was not at the peak of athletic fitness before he started training, about 3 months ago. This was not something I asked him to do, it was initiated without my involvement, but I am oozing with pride that he should devote so much time and physical effect to trying to raise funds to help find a cure for PD. We used to play a lot of golf together, pre PD, but even though we can no longer do that we still have lunch together at his golf club at least once a week. He regularly asks me all manner of things about my illness and it is not a taboo subject for either of us. But I must always remember that my illness has had just as much impact on his life as it has on mine; just as my illness has affected all those close to me.