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Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson’s disease is a disease that affects the dopamine-producing cells of the brain and causes progressive difficulties in motor skills and speech. Usually, the disease strikes those above 65. The main symptoms are rigidity, slowness, balance problems, and tremors.

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Brief reflection about limitations and some of their key factors from my personal experience

My childhood in the 70’s, was surrounded by doctors, lots of medical tests (some of them really painful), medical treatments and plenty of visits to hospitals; it was hard, especially for my parents, who suffered every wrong diagnosis.

As a matter of fact, the final diagnosis came very recently: my dystonia was based on a gene called dyt1 and, consequently, it was hereditary. That ‘brain deficiency’ (as a neurologist named it), which was degenerating into a progressive lack of ability, was just caused by some chemical dysfunctions, and didn’t affect my intellectual capacity. Nevertheless, I only look up to generosity as a universal value to consider. I learned this from my grandmother, completely illiterate but so wise... From then on, my life was synonymous with renunciation to plenty of things.

I especially remember how painful having to stop guitar lessons when I was twelve. It was just the beginning of a new and uncertain scene with lots of opportunities for me… although just like an spectator. I suppose I renounced my first love as well. Therefore, I became withdrawn for a decade, while I only kept the indispensable social relationships to survive. Without any brother or sister, and any feeling like making friends, I just leaned on some hobbies that finally became my salvation, music, chess, scientific literature… Meanwhile, the disease moved forward and my body started to suffer from the effects. Ten years went by very slowly. But one day, I decided (I’d like to suppose that I did) to get out of the safety cave I had built for myself. I know pretty well many other people under similar circumstances have been living plunged into chronic depressions, even having suicide thoughts.

I’d also like to think that my situation moved fortunately on a new stage of my life, much more mature and based on its new starting point philosophy: self-acceptance. I also concluded that analyzing too much, thinking about things once and again, was in my case just a waste of time. Nowadays I feel I can be even more categorical: Indeed, the essential of life consists of spending much more energy on doing than on thinking. I pay attention to many issues, as many as possible (doing, doing and doing… what psychologists –not me – would call ‘occupational therapy’). Of course there I have music, of course, chess (less than before), scientific literature… my old and usual supports. I just aspire to provide my family and friends with a decent environment but also to share with the whole world those things of mine which can be useful, being as humble as possible and not a model of anything at all. I would like to transmit this message from the bottom of my heart: I feel that limitations are not that strong if you definitely desire to build.

Fernando. (In http://www.distoweb.com you can visit a web place where I deal with movement disorders from a positive approach)

Posted on : Tuesday, March 23, 2010 5:36 PM
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