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J of Grey Cottage

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J of Grey Cottage last won the day on April 5

J of Grey Cottage had the most liked content!

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About J of Grey Cottage

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  • Birthday 02/16/1946

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    Literature, gardening, music

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  1. Hello, Linda -- I enjoyed the comments and advice in your post. Even considered aside from a spiritual setting, the advice on examining and using childhood experience would be approved by sociologists, too, I believe. At least, I have read the same principles propounded by them. And because of my background, I cannot help thinking of certain poets. "As the twig is bent, so the tree's inclined." Or "The child is father of the man." Many minds have pondered these ideas over the centuries. J
  2. Have a great time! I admire your courage -- a kayak?? In two days I'm taking a journey to New Mexico, where I will engage in such daring activities as strolling through art galleries, shopping, and eating heavily. Very tame stuff! But I am looking forward to visiting a state I've never seen before. Again, best wishes for a wonderful trip! J
  3. Good for you, Jul! I discovered somewhere in my thirties that I had lost the ability to ride a bike, and that was long before PD. I wouldn't dare try it now! But travel, I find, is a big confidence booster. Knowing that I can manage the planning and carrying out of all the details of travel is encouraging. This is especially true when I travel alone, as I did a few months ago in order to finish a manuscript for publication. Best of luck -- and keep riding that bicycle!
  4. Rogerstar1 -- I was with you on that smoothie recipe until I got to the broccoli. Broccoli? Was that just a test to see if we were reading the whole thing, or is there really broccoli in your smoothies? Of course, once a cook gets started with a blender, it's possible to hide almost any ingredient in there! J
  5. Yes, I have had experiences that are exactly like yours. Some medications can cause the swelling, I know. But I have learned little about the pains. I just know that they come and go and vary in intensity. In one leg, only first thing in the morning, I occasionally get a pain that feels like "shin splints." It shoots up my calf if I put any weight on that foot. Sometimes the ankle pain may feel more like a twist or sprain. They are not everyday things for me, thank goodness, but they can be incapacitating when the pain is severe. J
  6. Hello, Gulfvet -- Here is my contribution. It was when I was playing the piano that I first suspected I had a neurological problem. By the time I got my diagnosis, I could barely play at all because of my lack of manual coordination. Having studied classical piano for more than ten years, I was sad to lose that beautiful and rewarding pastime. With medication started and some improvement observable, I tried practicing again. It was pretty discouraging at first. But as the medications grew more and more effective in fighting symptoms, I practiced more often. Today I could never play on a concert stage, to be sure, but I can enjoy playing pieces of music that I never expected to play again! (A few examples are Chopin's "Fantaisie Impromptu in C# minor," two Rachmaninov preludes, Mendelssohn's "Rondo Capriccioso," and Chopin's "Berceuse.")
  7. Tai chi really does require good knees, since much of it is performed with knees slightly bent. Good luck with getting yours back to normal! J
  8. Thanks for your post, MusicMan. I see that you were using the original Azilect nearly three years before trying the generic. I have been taking it even longer, so I appreciate the warning your experience gives. My 20-year case of PD still is not advancing beyond the first stage, much to my amazement, and I'm operating on the principle of not rocking the boat. I did not know a generic of Azilect was available, but now I would be hesitant to try it. I hope that either your body adjusts to this new pill or that you can return to the old course of meds. Thank you again -- this sort of sharing is one of the values of forums. And please keep us posted on your case. J
  9. Great info to post, Lethe! Thank you. BillBRNC, yes, tai chi does provide real exercise if it is done correctly. It also leads the body to develop muscle memory that frees the mind and aids in relaxation. It does not lessen the need for cardiovascular exercise, though. And, yes, it is an ideal pursuit for couples. In every tai chi class in which I have participated, there was at least one married couple enrolled. It is an activity in which men and women seem to have equal ability.
  10. Glad you are doing better, Linda! Luke, I like your tone. When I first saw this thread on the forum, I had no idea it would turn into one of the most entertaining of all! In state-run organizations (such as the high schools in which I once taught) I was unyielding in observing a strict separation of religions and general education. But this forum is not state-run and its threads not mandatory reading for pwp. Although I do not label myself "Christian," those who find Christianity helpful in their self-treatment are welcome to their own thread as far as I am concerned. They are not proselytizing if I am not reading. Like Luke, I say . . . carry on!
  11. I can offer one more recommendation for studying tai chi. This is my sixth year, and I have moved into the advanced class, where I am now learning the 103-movement form. Prior to this I learned and practiced for several years the basic 24-movement form. I am the only pwp in my class of 16 people. Sometimes I have a day of poor balance. But for the most part I can do everything the others can do. As others have said here, tai chi is beneficial to body and mind or spirit. Although it is exercise, it is relaxing as well. Best wishes, J
  12. Hello, Gypsy Gold -- It's 7:30 A.M. where I am, near Portland, Oregon. The first thing I read this morning was your post, and I felt compelled to answer, though I shall perhaps be of no real help. You are young to be facing such daunting health issues. I was 56 when I was diagnosed with PD. Although I'm now 71, I still remember vividly the fear that pierced me when I heard the official confirmation of my self-diagnosis. The most terrifying element is hearing "progressive disease." The idea that things will only get worse is indescribably distressing. However, your diagnosis isn't even complete yet, and I see at least two encouraging signs. Though you say speech is difficult, you certainly write well! (And that's from a former teacher of literature and composition.) Your mind is obviously functioning clearly and well. You mention that when you've got your "meds working right," you feel more like your old self. That is greatly encouraging! It means there are medications that can help relieve your symptoms, a fact not everyone can claim. It may take you and your doctors time to experiment, but perhaps once you have a definite diagnosis, you will find the right dosages and combination of drugs to reclaim more of your former self. Your reference to "the deep, dark waters" was very touching and reminiscent for me. But try to keep your hopes up; in my case, once I found the right medications, things got better rather than worse. You do have a support network if you choose it here on the forum. There are others who have lived through the horrors you are undergoing now, and they will respond to your post, probably with more practical suggestions than I have been able to provide. But I'll be thinking of you and hoping that your diagnosis will guide you toward effective treatment and brighter skies. Sincere best wishes, J
  13. Hello, Bill -- I'm really just an echo to Dave and New Normal. Don't worry about the side effects. If one appears, there is time to deal with it then. Keeping busy and more or less ignoring PD seems to help us resist it. I've had PD for 20 years or more, have been on drugs for it for 15 years. The only side effect I experienced that caused me to change a medication was dizziness from Azilect. My doctor cut the dosage in half, and the problem was solved. As New Normal pointed out, you may hear about side effects a lot, but they are not the usual case. Best wishes!
  14. Good point, musicman! I've read that playing a musical instrument employs both sides of the brain simultaneously, something very few activities do. I practice at the piano daily for my own pleasure, but it may be helping to hold PD at bay as well.
  15. Hi, Sarahjo -- I'm sure that if you research memory and various types of recall, you can find a better answer than I'm about to give. But I just turn everyday activities into memory games. If I solve a "Jumble" puzzle, ten minutes later I try to recall the words I unscrambled. If I've used a recipe to make something, a little later I try to name as many of the ingredients as I can. That sort of thing helps develop the memory, I think. (And I am the only one who knows how bad my memory is!) Best wishes, J