March 10, 2020 at 7:51 pm #18235AllyKeymaster
Are you a religious or spiritual person? How has your diagnosis and disease progression affected – or maybe tested – your faith in a higher power? If you’re not spiritual or religious, where do you look for strength or encouragement?
March 13, 2020 at 12:12 pm #18275Mary Klein / John KleinParticipant
My husband (who has PD) and I are optimists I would say. This disease is such that it is impossible to predict the course it will take. For this reason, we remain hopeful that his type of PD will hold its own for some time. We also keep the faith that newer and better treatment options will be on the market over time. We have just taken the attitude that it is not worthwhile to fret and stew about what ‘might’ happen 5 or 8 years from now as it may not. We also think that it is more depressing to focus on the future rather than now. He recently said to me that he never, ever thinks about PD when he gets up in the morning – and he never focuses on it during the day. The participants in these forums offer some really valuable strategies for coping and addressing symptoms and their comments are very encouraging. We notice so many positive attitudes which in and of itself is encouraging. Our main strength comes from having each other as we are somewhat like two peas in a pod.
March 16, 2020 at 10:04 am #18286Mary Beth SkylisModerator
Mary, I think he’s onto something. Ruminating doesn’t help anyone. And if you spend all of your time thinking about what could go wrong, it’s almost as if you’re already consumed by it. My Dad takes a similar approach to his battle with PD. Sometimes the symptoms get in the way, but he doesn’t really want to know about all the possibilities. And I think it’s wise not to think too hard about them because everyone’s version of PD is a little different anyways. Seems like a “take it as it comes” attitude might be most effective when handling PD challenges.
March 17, 2020 at 11:51 am #18307AllyKeymaster
Thanks for responding, Mary. I think you and John have a great outlook and I’m glad you have each other to lean on. Why do you think you and John share this positive, solutions-focused mindset? Is it something you developed and strengthened together over time, or do you think how you were raised or other factors have had an impact? Do you think this is something that can learned or do you think you either have it or you don’t?
I’m also curious to know more about how you respond when you run into negative Nellies or people who don’t think like you do. What do you do?
- This reply was modified 1 year, 7 months ago by Ally.
May 8, 2020 at 8:56 pm #18571Robert HarrisParticipant
Okay, I’ll come out of the closet. I’m a Christian, and the faith and my relationship with the Lord have made all the difference. The reasons are. first, we are all going to die, but God has a cure for death. Second, take a look in the Bible and you’ll see that some of the greatest promoters of Christianity suffered horribly. The Apostle Paul got a call from the Holy Spirit to go to Macedonia and when got there he was promptly beaten up. (In his travels, he was shipwrecked, bitten by a poisonous snake, beaten a bunch more times, etc.) The point is, living a life for God is not a guarantee of disease-free protection. So we are free from asking, “Why me?” We trust that God is permitting (not necessarily wanting) whatever evil shows up uninvited, so we pray that the Lord will bring about some good from it, either as a witness to others, or as a message to ourselves. Third, now that I’m pushing 70, I can look back on the innumerable blessings God has heaped on me through my life (I am firmly convinced that his Spirit helped me write all those papers in college and grad school), and continues to heap on me every day (family, friends, books, nature, delicious ice water–my favorite beverage–a comfortable home with hot and cold water on tap, air conditioning, etc., etc., etc.), so that to complain about having PD would seem ungenerous, petty, and uncalled for. Connect the dots and find grace abounding. If I may conclude with a favorite definition: “Faith is trusting God when you don’t understand.”
Blessings on every Parky and every Caregiver.
June 11, 2020 at 11:13 pm #18771RobParticipant
I don’t see myself as a religious person, but really wish that I was. Two of the greatest songs in music history are “I still haven’t found what I am looking for” by U2 and “the Rising” by Bruce Springsteen. I can not play either without shedding a tear.
I consider myself a spiritual person though. Sometimes we need to climb a mountain, or walk a shoreline just to feel alive again.
I created my own phrase: “seek to understand, not to conquer”. We seem to be obsessed with finding opposition. It would be much easier just to listen. Religion and I have yet to chance upon mutual discovery, but I can feel it in my heart that our paths will meet soon. When it does, I will be all ears.
“Spirits above and behind me
Faces gone black, eyes burnin’ bright
May their precious blood forever bind me
Lord as I stand before your fiery light”
The Rising, by Bruce Springsteen
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