Stumbling Blocks or Stepping Stones?

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by Lori DePorter |

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A few weeks ago, I impulsively purchased a book of “Joy Notes” at a restaurant gift shop. The purpose of the book is to tear out the notes and share them with someone who needs them.

Here is one I am sharing with all of you:

“God turns stumbling blocks into stepping stones. The only question is when.”

Life is full of obstacles, especially for those of us with a chronic and sometimes invisible illness. Each day brings its own set of challenges and its share of stumbling blocks. Many of them are quite literal rather than metaphoric. Our balance is compromised and we have tremors that hinder our ability to control our body and its movements. Metaphorically speaking, some non-motor symptoms are not stumbling blocks — they are walls.

How do we use the stumbling blocks?

Do the stumbling blocks become the stepping stones that go over the wall? Or do they make a path around the wall? Maybe a little bit of both. Sometimes one way is not always the best way — a combination of twists and turns with ups and downs is the way to go. With Parkinson’s, we are creative every day because sometimes our body works and other times it simply says, “Nope.”

Finding a way to manage our body’s rebellion is the challenge. Set small and achievable goals for yourself throughout the day. The keyword is “achievable.” Set yourself up for success rather than failure. You may not be able to hop out of bed and be ready to face your day the way you did before Parkinson’s. However, you can get out of bed five minutes early, roll onto the floor, and stretch to aid your body in its attempt to get moving. Goal set and accomplished. Your day is off to a great start. Your stumbling block of rigidity just became a stepping stone to exercise and starting your day.

Ultimately, it doesn’t matter. We just need to get past the wall one day and one block at a time. Everyone may have a different path. No two journeys will look the same. Our journeys are uniquely our own, but our destination is the same — what lies on the horizon.

The horizon does not have to be a grand event in the future. The horizon can simply be turning your cell phone off, relaxing, and having a restful sleep.


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 Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to Parkinson’s disease.


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