Holding Hands Helps Me Face the Darkness of Anxiety

Sherri Woodbridge avatar

by Sherri Woodbridge |

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One of my favorite sights is a dad and his child walking together and holding hands. I also absolutely love hearing the childhood laughter that comes from Dad rolling on the floor and roughhousing with his kids, otherwise known as playing “rough and tough” in my grandson’s house.

When you take another person’s hand, it is like you are saying to them, “I will not leave you. I am right here beside you. You are not alone.”

How often do we feel down and troubled, isolated and alone? How often do we feel as if we are never going to make it out of this darkness we feel caught up in? How often have you wished lately that you could hold the hand of someone bigger, someone stronger, someone safer, thereby feeling bigger, stronger, and safer yourself?

Lately the anxiety that can often accompany Parkinson’s disease has been playing with my head. I often worry about things I cannot control. I can do things to exit this mental place, but sometimes I catch myself dwelling on things I would rather not be dwelling upon.

My anxieties are undirected, I cannot focus on a task, or I don’t have the enthusiasm to do much of anything. Sometimes I want to crawl into a corner and hide. Yet, I would imagine that is probably not the best thing to do.

And so, I make a break in the pattern. If I am sitting, I will get up and force myself to do something, which isn’t difficult. There is always something to do, such as washing dishes, doing laundry, or going for a walk. It doesn’t have to be a long, adventurous walk. Maybe just to the mailbox and back. Any size or shape of walk will do. 

If it’s raining, I do some indoor exercises, such as five pushups and 10 situps. Any amount will make a difference for your brain and body. If you have a grandchild nearby, include them, and the walk will become adventurous! They will show you things you would have missed.

The days are shorter in the winter. As people with Parkinson’s disease, we tend to already be in short supply of vitamin D, so we can’t forget to take our supplements. Sweden has a lot of light, but it also has a lot of darkness. Don’t go there in the winter, unless you are going to see the Northern Lights.

Whether you’re going out to see the Northern Lights or to check the mailbox, make sure to take someone with you. And hold their hand.


Note: Parkinson’s News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Parkinson’s News Today or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to Parkinson’s disease.


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