Day 3 – Parkinson’s Awareness Week

My partner, Peter, and I are very lucky. He displays few symptoms of Parkinsonism so it is not immediately obvious to other people that he has the condition. Hmmm…

Perhaps that is not such a good thing? When we were on holiday in Morocco a couple of years ago some of the tour group arranged a trip to a waterfall. One of the men who was going on the trip disparagingly told Peter that he wouldn’t be able to manage the walking because of his limp! So rude! So arrogant! And, if he had but known, so untrue!

In his youth Peter was a rock climber and mountaineer. However, twenty-nine years ago, almost to the day, he fell about 9,000 feet down Mount Fuji and was amazingly lucky to survive. He was in a bad way, having sustained a brain injury requiring surgery, plus multiple broken bones. In fact, when his mother was informed of the accident she was told that he had died. You could say that his recovery was miraculous. They were told by doctors that he would not walk again but Peter fought against that. He not only learned to walk again, but actually went on to climb his two highest mountains, Kilimanjaro and Mont Blanc, after that.

For several years after the first symptoms of Parkinsonism appeared, Peter continued to regularly walk six, ten or even twelve, miles. At the time of the holiday in Morocco he was still going for six mile walks on the moors once or twice a week. Hardly the actions of a man whose limp would prevent him from going on a trip to see a waterfall.

The chap who told Peter he wouldn’t be able to manage the walk was trying to take control away from him. People with Parkinson’s or Parkinsonism, or indeed any disabled people, need to be #in control. What right do others have to tell them they cannot achieve something?

Find out a bit more about the condition by visiting Parkinsons UK, perhaps even make a donation to help the search for a cure.

Help people with Parkinson’s to be #in control.


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