ACCEPTANCE

Which statement is correct:

  1. No pain, no gain
  2. Pain, no gain

I used to think I knew the answer.  I told my older patients that the correct answer was number 2: pain, no gain.  Now, I’m not as sure.  Pain, no gain is partially responsible for my current condition.  To avoid more pain, I avoided exercise. 

Right now, I’m in pain!  As I’ve already told you, I’ve enrolled in “Rock Steady” (a Parkinson’s exercise program).  This is Parkinson’s Awareness Month and there are all kind of events scheduled.

Personally, I’m aware of Parkinson’s every day from the time I wake up until the time I go to bed.  I’m also aware of the effects of degenerative arthritis, depression and obesity. I’ve finally ACCEPTED my problems and I’m actively fighting all three at once. My Rock Steady class is my best weapon.  I exercise 3 times a week in class and the rest of the week, at exercise at home.  Exercise hurts.

So, back to my initial question.  I have pain this am in my knees. Yesterday, I worked on being able to get onto and off of the floor. I know it sounds easy (even a toddler can do it) but it isn’t.  I didn’t succeed.  Tomorrow, I’ll work on it again.   Getting on and off the floor is critical as Parkinson’s patients, me included, tend to fall a lot.

I work with two instructors. They are excellent.  They give you tasks to complete and work with you to help you succeed.  They advise that you work at your own pace, rest when needed.  I’ve had five six sessions and am frustrated by the fact that I have worsened with each session.  I doubt I’ll even attempt getting on the floor in tomorrow’s session.

It seems that the “no pain, no gain” approach is going to fail as did the “pain no gain”.  What’s a guy to do?  The obvious answer is to quit exercising.  That’s also the wrong answer. So, I’ll keep exercising and look for a less painful midground.

The lesson for today is not whether number one or number two is correct.  The lesson for today is about ACCEPTANCE.  Until I accepted my disability/illness, there was nothing to fight, nothing to understand, nothing to learn about and, certainly, nothing I could do about it.

With acceptance comes a host of possibilities, Rock Steady and deep brain stimulation are the two I’m focusing on currently.  Hopefully, research will find even better options in the future.

Over the next few days, I’m going to hit you up for donations to the Michael J Fox’s Parkinson’s Foundation.  They need funds to continue to explore treatments for Parkinson’s.  There will be a Parkinson’s event in your area this month; please join in.

Here’s your joke for today:

A general is being driven in a jeep through the desert on the way to a training exercise. Out in the middle of nowhere, the jeep breaks down. The female jeep driver jumps out, opens the hood and starts working on the engine. The general, wanting to be helpful, finds a toolbox in the back and opens it. “Do you want a screwdriver?” he asks. “Might as well, it’s going to be a while before anyone shows up,” she says!

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