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Posted by Betty H. on September 12, 2000 at 13:21:02:

In Reply to: Re: Which choice would you choose? posted by Bruce on September 06, 2000 at 01:39:42:

: : : : : : : I am sure there are many people reading this board that have occasionally been told you "can't" do something because you have pd. Well, I have just been forced to use a walker, and I got to thinking how do I know I can't push a vacuum cleaner unless I tried it. Moping the kitchen wasn't dificult. I just kept moving around in my scooter. Today I vacuumed the living room keeping the walker in front of me. This was a little harder, because the legs were causing some problems, but I would stop and take a short break and then get up and push that sweeper again. This may not be much to some people, but it did give my morale a big boost. BBruce

: : : : : : Bruce you proved that you can.What is the saying,I can,I can,I can !!!!.
: Betty H, Googy and Lory, I just returned from my a

: : : : : Bruce
: : : : : You are such a wonderful role model, but how do you do it? Where do you get so much strength & courage? I have had P.D. over 5 yrs. & I know it's here to stay, along with Psoriatic Arthritis and other aggravating problems, but I haven't accepted it. I didn't ask for all this in my life and I hate it & it can just go away. Right! Like all of you I'm sure, you hope you'll wake up & find it was just a nightmare. I realize this sounds stupid & I'm thinking like a child, but how do you make yourself go every day with such a load to carry. I consider myself to be a religious person, but I must admit, my faith is dwindling, I use to pride myself in being the ideal patient and being in control, but not any more. You are never away from it. Just all the pills alone, you feel like you should explode any min. The first thing that came to mind when I was diagnosed was, "what a burden I'm going to be on my famly". and that is in my mind almost constantly. They are wonderful & supportive, but that doesn't make it any easier.
: : : : : I'm sorry, I guess I've gotten off track. I know you all have this to deal with and more, but thanks for listening. And Bruce, "way to go", if anyone can do something, I think you can.
: : : : : Thanks for motivaing us!
: : : : : Betty H.

: : : : Betty H: I don't want to mislead anyone, in that I don't feel courages but just an ordinary guy trying to cope with this diswase. I was hoping to motivate someone when I wrote the message,This is what I truly believe that helps cope with it all. It is importent to accept the problem and try to adjust to the changes in our health as time goes by. When I was concerned about not being able to walk again, I thought about it for a long time and decided I would fight it anyway I could think of. Also, having pd has really made me appreciate the little things in life that many people are not aware of in there high pressured jobs. The next thing Betty is just take it one day at a time and live tthat day the best that you can and try to enjoy life and I never wish for something I can't possibly attain. Today was even more rewarding then yesterday. My great neighbors offered to do my grocery shopping for me, but even though they mean well, that is not good for my mental health. Today I finaly had to get over this barrrier and decided to try it. I had no idea how far I could walk with the walker. To my surprise, it was an easy walk. I told my neighbor what I did and he said "you should have called." Do you see the significace of thst shopping trip? That was a fantastic "high" because it showed I am still a healthy person and can still do most things everyone else does from day to day. I know it is harder the sicker you are, but try not to punish yourself and think of the things you can still do well. Happiness amd attitude are dependent upon how hard we have to fight for it. If we choose to be sad we probably will be sad. There are a lot of beautiful and fascinating things to see and experience in the world. All we have to do is open our eyes and our hearts to discover it. This is my challenge to you Betty. Try some of those things I talked about and see what a difference it will make in your life. Bruce

: : : Bruce,
: : : Thank you, you are amazing.
: : : I guess my problem lies, at least partly to the fact,that soon after the PD arrived, then I was diagnosed with the arthritis. The arthriris wrecked my feet in short order and I have spent the entire summer in a foot & leg cast, following surgery on my left foot & in lots of pain. The metatarsal joints had to be fused & with a bone graft, bunionectomy & shorten & reposition 4 toes. It has really gotten me down, mentally & physically. (That 4 day hospital stay was a nightmare in spite of my planning. I think you are familiar with that kind of situation.) Unfortunately I am a #1 worrier, but fortunately I'm married to an optimist. I spent the better part of 35 yrs. working as a nurse, caring for other people, and with my husband's help, have raised 4 children. As you all know, it's very difficult being on the other side of the fence, when you have been the care giver for so long. I still want to do things myself & my way, but I guess as hard as it is, I'm going to have to relinquish that role. I did learn, long ago, to stop & smell the roses. It seems I've opened my eyes to some degree, but need to open my heart & stop dreaming for what was & will never be again. (It looks so good on paper, but so hard to carry out.) I have 2 "sayings" on my refrig. you will probably like, author unknown.
: : : (There is a picture of a very frazzled looking person.)
: : : "ALWAYS REMEMBER THAT WHAT HAPPENS AROUND US IS LARGELY OUTSIDE OUR CONTROL, BUT THE WAY WE CHOOSE TO REACT TO IT IS INSIDE OUR CONTROL." I guess I should read the latter more often. I made a copy of HAPPINESS IS NOW that Carole posted last month, which is so true. It seems I better do my best to work on a few things or this journey of life, such that it is, but the only one I have,is going to pass me by. I'm sure you've heard, LIVE THIS DAY AS IF IT WERE YOUR LAST, AS SOME DAY IT WILL BE.
: : : Bruce, thanks for caring & thanks for sharing.
: : : Betty H.
: : What you all write is so very meaningful to me. I work in a nursing home, and by regulation we have to let folks do as much for themselves as they can to increase their independence, maintain their dignity and respect, and give them a mental and physical sense of well-beiing. And it is so hard NOT to do for them -- to allow them 20 minutes to button their shirt, etc. Then, when I am all thumbs, it is so HARD for ME to ask someone in a meeting to take minutes because my hand and leg shake so much. Or to allow myself to fix a frozen pizza for my husband after a day at work, instead of fixing him a "nice" meal (he LOVES pizza, but I still feel guilty). Keep up the nice motivational aura -- it's good for all of us here. Lory
: Betty H, Googy and Lory, I just returned from an appointment with Dr. Hubble at Ohio Stateand yes, we got lost again. She has got to be my all time favorite doctor. She had a very sophisticated walker in her office and I immediately saw a lot of benefits using it. This is what I wanted to share with you. Since my sister doesn't have a computer, hopefully she won't read this message. She is having pain in one knee and now has developed back pain. All she would talk about is the things she cann't do, her aches and pains, and makes herself miserable by thinking about wanting to get outside and doing yard work. She had told me in the past that she gave up on using a walker, because she said it was to "heavy" to lift and it strained her back. So after I got home I immediately called her about this great walker which most of it would be paid by medicare. Then came the excusses: cost to much, wasn't sure it would work for her and finally she said I should try it first. She finally started crying and said she just wasn't as strong as I am. In other words, it was begining to sound like she was giving in to her problem and was really into self pity. I told her those same words just take it one day at a time and try to be more patient. Also, I reminded her I can't walk without a walker, but I am doing better walking with the walker. Also, I am really excited about getting the high tech model, because it is all on wheels and their is no danger of walking to far, because it has a small seat to sit and rest. I feel so strongly about regaining my mobility that I am determined to walk every day. We all have choices, my sister chooses to sit and brood all day and I choose to fight it and continue to enjoy life. Which choice would you choose? Bruce

Bruce, Sorry I'm late with reply. I say, "FIGHT & live the very best you can."
My problem is I really haven't felt like fighting anything, due to feet that have been killing me. It's (for the most part)from psoriatic arthritis. On June 5th, I had surgery on my left foot because the pain was so bad & my foot was getting so deformed. A doctor at Georgetown Med. Center, who does nothing but feet & ankles, fused the metatarsal joints & did a bone graft, removed a very large bunion & fused the big toe, also. The 3 middle toes didn't escape, they were also opened & whatever else & fused. The pain has been horrible, was in a cast for 3 months & now in an uncomfortable walking boot. I was not suppose to put any weight on that foot for 6 weeks, so a walker & I became very familiar. Unfortunately, due to the PD, I lost my balance several times & the foot went down. I'm going to PT now & if the swelling ever goes down, I'll be fitted for orthotics. The most discouraging part of all this is I continue to have pain, though not quite as bad & my right foot is headed down the same path. I've been on so many arthritis drugs & am now taking methotrexate. I guess the point of all this is it's so hard to "fight" when your feet don't work & are quite painful. I know there are things to do without your feet, but I've been so depressed & feeling like such a burden to my family. (I know what you said & I'm trying. I work on that challenge every day, at least part of every day). :-) I'm just too old for all his mess, 62 yrs., but I guess in this case it's too old AND too young.The grass always looks greener on the other side, when actually it isn't. There is always someone worse off- God Bless them. Thank God for a supportive family & for all of you who keep me going. Bruce, I know the going gets rough for you too and all the rest out there, encluding the wonderful care givers, but please keep motivating us & pushing us in the right direction when we forget where we're going, why & who.
Take care & thanks for listening -- you are listening aren't you?? :-) just kidding, I do accuse some around here that they tune me out.
Betty H.

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