The first month.
So one month in I thought I would write a quick update on what's happened since being diagnosed.
I have progressively increase my steps and haven't missed a day walking. My new regime means up at 6 am for a walk each day rain hail or shine.
Started off with the slower walk and have progressively extended my duration and speed. At the end of this first month I'm now up to 4500 steps daily for the morning walk plus any extra that I do through the day. I'm making a real effort to walk more generally and hit 8000 steps on Friday when I walked along to meet the 4101 crew for a catch up at the river.
I have been on a regime of dopamine tablets three times a day at 7 am - 1 pm - 7 pm. Beginning on 50 mg each time for the first week, then 100 mg each time. Now adjusted to 150 mg to give me a bit more "go" according to Prof Silburn. As he indicated at the first consultation, we may monitor and tweak the amount over time to get an appropriate level.
Informing the Masses.
So began the process of informing those who needed to know. First my older brother Eric who i had discussed my hand tremble with when on my last NZ trip, then my three kids - Frances, Nicolas and Emily. After that individually my younger brother Steven, and my two sisters Rachael and Phiona. Last but not least my Mum. Our family are pretty open about health matters and was important to me to keep them up to date. Glenda, my partner and I sat down and informed her two, Kaitlyn and Matthew, and also let her siblings and mum and dad know.
After all that was done, and over the next few weeks post diagnosis I progressively informed my friends, individually discussing the whole scenario at a moment that seemed right for each. In every case, it was a relief to get this out in the open and I was given supportive comments from all. That means a lot.
Carefully I also informed a couple of key clients so that they could be reassured that the thinking part of my brain was still 100% and that service delivery would be as per normal. I was determined that this should not impact my work, even if I needed to modify work patterns slightly to balance this with how my body was dealing with the new dopamine regime.
It was after week one that I decided to that I would use my tech skills for something useful, even if only for my own benefit, to follow the lead of one of my best mates of all time and former enabling business partner and create this site / blog. Gary Taiaroa RIP , still an inspiration. This will allow anyone to tag along without feeling like they are intruding. My objective is to help get some awareness of Parkinson's disease out there and at the same time have some reflection and self assessment of my progress over time.
I have spent a bit of time since diagnosis researching this disorder, reading and assessing much material from numerous sources. Some good, some out there. More information will be reviewed and anything that I feel worthy or interesting I will link to on the resources pages of this site.
Included was a quick read of Michael J Fox - Lucky man that happened to be unread on the bookshelf. Glenda had purchased it for whole 50c at a local school book sale some years ago and neither of us had read it before.
Joining in with others.
Found and joined up as a member to the Parkinson's Queensland Inc, and intend to get really involved in this organisation. Since I am an early starter with Parkinson's disease, I am confident that I can offer something now with a view to "pay it forward" when I may not be in a position to do so.
So far so good.
All who know me will most likely recognise that I am usually pragmatic and determined, and once i have some objective in mind usually work away in a logical and orderly way toward the goal. I have a similar philosophy regarding my Parkinson's. I have it for life, I understand what I need to do to deal with it right now, and know that this may change over time. I am not upset, nor angry, nor looking for sympathy. For me this is about awareness, both about Parkinson's generally and that I have it personally. It could be worse. I reckon I can manage this for many years without drama, simply adjusting to what ever changes that are yet to be coming my way. All I ask is that if I need to time things or do things to better suit my situation at that moment that it will be accommodated and understood. It may be that from time to time I may not be as free with my volunteer time as I have been, for me it is now a case of making hay while the sun shines, and my focus will be on my own business and paying it forward with Parkinson's related activities.
And that is all for just now - keep a lookout for the next post.