June 28, 2010

Eyes Wide Open

I’m sitting on a roof deck overlooking the tailored grounds of a Twelfth Century pillared building, lit by a street lamp below me. Roses and geraniums adorn it’s entry, leading into one of numerous art museums in Winterthur, Switzerland. At 1:27 am, it is closed. It is not because of jet lag that sleep eludes me. That has come and gone. After days of cycling through the Alps, I’ve adjusted to the time switch (which is now 2:00 am, according to the magical gong of Swiss church bells). This body exhaustion-brain wired state of insomnia reflects the strongest of my PD symptoms. Travel tends to feed into it even more. But I’m not willing to give up exploring the land, culture, food of different places. No, PD takes too much as it is, I’m handing over the old bell tower that was our inn the night we rode into Sedrum, […]
July 26, 2010

Travels with Friends

Here’s a travel log, complete with pics, from my recent bicycle trip to Switzerland. http://www.limyoga.com/swiss_ride/ What’s not in the story is an expression of how grateful I am, not only to my captain and fellow stoker, but to my friends as well. You were there on the ride with me, particularly when the going got tough. One place a friend showed up was after I blamed the wacky European cobblestone sidewalks for causing me to trip (though it was less than graceful, I did remain upright!).  I thought of Al. He’d have enjoyed the humor, as I noticed when I glanced down, that the path I was walking was paved. Hmmm, seems the PD had more to do with my vertical challenge than what was underfoot. Stumbles strikes again. A few nights, when PD’s insomnia kept me from sleep, my husband stayed awake to keep me company. We shared stories […]
August 1, 2010

Less Is More

All it took was one email in my inbox to make me smile. Oh, there were plenty of other messages there, from spam and scams to Facebook notices and must-see YouTube links. But this one I read and read again. Like discovering a lone poppy in bloom among the mounds of crab grass, I paused and savored what I saw. Here it is, from guest blogger Debbie Flamini, who shares her insights into the essence of living your yoga while living with PD. Enjoy. FINDING BALANCE by Debbie Flamini Less is more, is more or less What my body needs, to not feel stress No body stress leads to Cinderella Days How do I get there?  Let’s count the ways! Consider less is more in everything you do From yard work to exercise, even laundry too Stop competing with the body you owned before Your current one still works, right […]
August 21, 2010

Mirapex, Here a Vex

At my last checkup with my neurologist, he ran through the standard office visit litany of tests. I touched my nose, I puffed my cheeks, I walked to the end of the hall and turned and walked back. When he turned his wrists and said, “Show me how you change a light bulb,” I smiled. My arms at my sides, I replied, “I ask my husband to do that.” Though he didn’t laugh out loud (I did notice, however, perhaps a slight effort to remain his serious self), I still like him. I believe it’s important to have a good relationship with my doctors, where I can trust that they are not only listening, but truly hearing what I’m saying. No joke. So during the appointment, when I mentioned that sleep (or lack thereof) ranked highest on my list of disruptive symptoms, he nodded. He asked a few questions. He […]
September 6, 2010

New England Parkinson’s Ride, Sept. 11

If you happen to be in the Old Orchard Beach, Maine, area this Saturday, September 11, look for us on the triple during the New England PD Ride. Come and cheer us on! There are 195 riders this year! That’s nearly double last year. Still, we’re easy to spot as the only whole family on one bike. For some training pics and stories, go to http://www.limyoga.com/parkinsons_ride.html The rides begin at Loranger Middle School, 148 Saco Ave., Old Orchard Beach. Team Mama will be riding Fred on the 50-miler, which heads out at 9:30 am.  The ride ends at The Pier, at 1 West Grand Ave, Old Orchard Beach. I expect we’ll roll in between 1:30 – 2:30. Here’s hoping for good weather! But even if the weather isn’t postcard-perfect: Rain or shine, Fred rolls Fifty miles uphill and down Rain or shine: a cure.
September 21, 2010

Living Room

For four days, I’ll be immersed in all things Parkinson’s at the World Parkinson Congress in Glasgow. Thousands of patients, caretakers, researchers, health care professionals, pharmaceutical reps, will converge on this Scottish city to focus on this degenerative neurological disorder. And I’m okay with that. Typically, I would resist such an event as I would retract from a serving of Lima beans. Good for me, but hard to swallow. This state of mind of openly listening to, absorbing, witnessing the numerous, nasty effects of this disease has more to do with all that will be around me rather than what’s being served up: I’ve never been to Scotland. I intend to enjoy a few days at the front end of the conference simply being a tourist rather than being someone with PD. In addition to the plethora of medical presentations from around the world, there are a number to choose […]
October 13, 2010

A Glimpse of Glasgow

From the Opening Ceremony right through to the final playful Brain Game session, the World Parkinson Congress in Glasgow, Scotland, elicited laughter, tears, and much thought. Opening Ceremony Attendees included health professionals as well as those living with PD. At the opening ceremony, those who’d conceived and created this summit of minds and bodies gave a brief history and announced that the third Congress is scheduled for 2013 in Montreal. Another speaker focused on the future, with a plea for urgency. This thirty-nine-year-old father of two young  children called for urgency toward  awareness – this is not a disease of the elderly, he’d said – as well as urgency toward better treatment, toward a cure. The two winning entries from the video conference, shown on a huge screen, each gave those in the auditorium without PD an inside look at living each day. And to those of us living with […]
October 16, 2010

Gentle Yoga and Parkinson’s

Some pairings go together naturally: dark chocolate and red wine; my dog and her tennis ball; Starsky and Hutch. But when did ‘gentle’ and ‘Parkinson’s’ become synonymous? Look at the local gym or online. Classes, books, DVDs list Gentle and Yoga alongside Parkinson’s and a litany of other disorders, as though slowing down the pace and setting a chair on the mat is an elixir for anyone with a neurological condition. Meet Joe. He’s a marathoner. At 60, he started competing in ultra marathons. He has lived with Parkinson’s for more than 30 years. Chris is a cyclist. He recently rode a century – 100 miles in one day. His route was a particularly hilly one. Doug rode across Alaska solo this summer. Both live with PD; both are in their 50s. Pam dances, David runs. We walk, swim, and hike. Speaking of hiking, the Parkinson’s Association of Ireland is […]
October 28, 2010

Gratitude Additions

Maple trees Fuzzy slippers Leeks Watercolor paints Tuesdays and Fridays, yoga class days
November 23, 2010


No, these are not new Parkinson’s terms. Nor is it yoga lingo. SSP SSP is my humble anacronym for Shameless Self-Promotion, which does actually involve yoga and Parkinson’s: After many hours filming and editing, I’m happy to announce the release of the Companion DVD to Yoga for Movement Disorders. Here’s a description: Companion DVD Yoga for Movement Disorders This DVD guides viewers through a series of yoga poses and sequences designed specifically for people with Parkinson’s or other movement disorders. The two-hour video includes: Warm-up series Morning flow Afternoon flow Evening flow Sun Salutation Standing and seated variations of each Tips concerning balance, posture, tremor Resource list Expanding on the award-winning book, Yoga for Movement Disorders, this DVD can be used as a companion volume or as a stand-alone guide. The author is a Registered Yoga Teacher who specializes in adapting traditional poses for people with movement disorders. A stroke […]