STAYING THE COURSEAugust 14, 2009
Learning how to hang on to your chosen path
One of the hardest and most frustrating decisions in my life has been the ability to continue on with the execution of carefully drawn plans leading to a reasonable goal. Recently I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease after discovering a slight tremor in my hand approximately five years ago. I do not take any medications and have been able to hold the disease in check by following a rigid diet, exercise and lifestyle.
Parkinson’s is a degenerative condition of the nervous system. It manifests in many symptoms such as tremors, slowness of movement, extremely tight muscles, speech difficulties, constipation and memory problems. Medications offered have various side effects and are only good for a couple of years. Therefore I have chosen to pursue the path of total responsibility for the treatment of the disease. This entails an ever-changing continuing analysis of what does and does not work. With my background of teaching karate, yoga and tai chi along with my knowledge of nutrition and lifestyle modifications, I feel that I have spent my life in training for my battle with the disease.
My first thoughts were how to modify my diet in order to stop the death of the neurons in a part of my brain. My previous diet was a vegan/vegetarian diet and I added essential fatty acids and animal foods to supply the fats I had stayed away from for many years. I cut down on my carbohydrates and increased my protein in order to make more neurotransmitters. In short I did a total modification of my diet and will continue along these lines until I have found the ideal diet for me.
As for exercise, I continued my regimen of yoga, tai chi and meditation for longer periods of time. I found after experimentation that if I used the tremor to focus on during my meditation, it would ease off after 10 minutes.
My purpose in writing this article is to give you some idea of how I chose to stay the course. For the most part it is my nature to push thru my problems adhering to a reasonable goal. Small setbacks serve to let me push harder. Occasionally I flounder with a bad decision, hopefully learning through my errors. Little by little day-by-day I strive to remain in the moment. I am always busy teaching, practicing and moving on with my life instead of reliving the past or dreaming about the future. My plans are set to be modified at any time. My destiny is to be of service to humanity. Here I stand facing my highest mountain, just like we all do.