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(Like so many pieces of laundry, morning thoughts  at.)

October 9-20,  2019

Living with Parkinson’s

Sam & Phyllis Turner ©2019


ALOHA: Adult Loss of Hearing Association      
APDA: American Parkinson Disease Association
BSC: Bristol Stool Chart
CH: Cynthia Holmes, Ph.D. Neurology
CPAP: Continuous Positive Airway Pressure mask (for Sleep Apnea).
DBS: Deep Brain Stimulation (much improved since Michael J. Fox!)
HEH: Happily Ever After!
HOH: Hard of Hearing         
HS: Harvey Stanbrough Pro-writer and mentor (
IBS: Irritable Bowel Syndrome (often associated with PD)
LVST: Lee Silverman Voice Technique) has been an effective way to treat the symptoms of impaired voice and swallowing (a PD problem for some) …
MJFF: Michael J. Fox Foundation
NAMASTE: The Spirit within me honors the Spirit within you.
PD: Parkinson’s Disease
PDSG: Parkinson’s Support Group(s)
PMD: PARKINSON & Movement Disorder Alliance
P.J.: Phyllis – my wife: SWOMBO (She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed) A contributor and #1 editor.
PT: Personal trainer Tresha,  including daily in-home exercise assignments for PD
RWA: Romance Writers of America               
TAODW: The Art of Dying Well-A practical Guide to a Good End of Life, by Katy Butler
TCF: The Compassionate Friends (For parents who have experienced the death of a child or sibling.)
WIP: Work in Progress (Hiker Man) or (32º North) Title undecided. Writing is my vacation!
YISKA: Navajo for Darkness has passed.  (Also the name of a Navajo Border Collie who barks in Navajo!)

10.09.19: 0730: I drove us to Desert Sports, where Tresha had me walking the floor “ladder” – step in – step out – step in –step out. A simple operation, usually. Today, it was difficult with this left leg in pain.  She told me to continue with the massages immediately.  I have an appointment booked for Thursday.

1000: I sent Maytag Moments out.  While PJ was attending her meeting, I had time to read the story over orally. I smoothed out the first twenty pages of the WIP (Awakening). Yesterday’s Quail Run reading was helpful.  PJ and I had gone over the first twenty pages just to see how the words felt. Even then, when we read to the group, we found discrepancies in the wording and some new spelling errors. A couple of misplaced sentences that we missed would have spoiled the setting description. How could we miss them?

1430:PJ is back.  DRAGON is still malfunctioning. That’s slowing me down. I’ll have to call the techs tomorrow and find out what’s wrong. This evening, we watched the news and caught up with all THE VOICE programs.  There are some surprisingly good  singers.  We enjoy the banter between the judges.  They are all having a good time.

I was finally able to find the series THIS IS US. (Pauletta recommended it a couple of Quails ago.) There must be four or five plots going at the same time.  It’s a challenge to keep up.  But the action is realistic and envolving. We will give it a try.

10.10.19: 0600: 62º this morning. I did not take an aspirin last night and regretted it this morning.  Al and Dexter Dog stopped by for a morning greeting. This is Dexter’s fourth anniversary as a rescued dog. Al is going to take him to Home Depot to ride in the cart and just walk up and down the aisle looking at stuff. Al won’t give him a credit card. Dex is happy just watching the people who pat him in passing. 1130: We had chicken quesadilla at Lil’ Anthony’s with Carl and Guy. 1400: Peaceful Spirit Massage & Wellness Center for an hour of deep massage for Sam’s hamstring – left leg.  (PJ read her e-book in the waiting room.) Stopped by Wild Birds Unlimited and bought a case of bird-feed cylinders, which should last through December.

1900:The high point of the evening was I escorted her to the TV-Room, where we attended a two-hour BBC Prom concert (2012 edition) of Broadway hits. We didn’t have to battle a parking lot or traffic driving home, and we had better than front row seats. (They had robotic cameras situated in strategic locations within the orchestra.) We could watch the violins, the trumpets, the trombones, the drummers, even an aerial view of the two pianos.  What a thrill to have virtual “participation” in this experience. What a pleasure to not have to worry about heavy traffic.

10/11/19: Up by 0500, taking a hot shower with the jet-pulse spray on the back of my leg.  I’m drinking a lot of water as directed. Fighting gastro problems through 1000 when I finally took an Imodium A/D.  I should have done this when I got up, but I didn’t realize it would be so strong for so long. Is this (IBS) happening because of the massage, and the increase of water intake, or the gradual reduction of Apriso, or a new symptom of Parkinson’s?

1000: Had a happy (cell phone) response from Virginia M. regarding my short story (Awakening).

From Sara M.

Regarding the short story, Awakening.

My favorite so far! The real page-turner. I love that you incorporated Yiska!! Filled my heart with joy.

And her treck continues.

 “I’ve got blisters beneath my blisters that have a heartbeat when I pause walking. My feet feel like they’ve been through a meat grinder. I never realized how painful the constant pounding on my feet would be … I can barely walk at the end of the day. But, my body is becoming toned and reliable, and I’m amazed at the change in mindset when I look at what I expect of myself now. I don’t think twice about putting in 15 miles each day.  I’m loving, absolutely loving, the Camino culture among the pilgrims. It’s common for everyone to greet you as you arrive in each town or bar or hostel. Everyone strikes up a conversation with everyone else, and communal meals are the norm. I’m halfway across Spain, 400 km done, 400 to go.  Waking, walking, eating, walking, drinking, washing, sleeping, repeat … day after day until I reach Santiago.

Sending you both my love!

Exciting, isn’t it?  PJ’s nephew and wife are walking the (AT) Appalachian Trail from Maine to Georgia. 2,200 miles.  PJ will put in the specifics when she checks this.  They started in Georgia and stopped about half-way up, taking three weeks off to travel in Japan. When they came back to the U.S., they began at the top of the AT heading south. The hope is that they will be out of the cold northern weather before they arrive at their mid-way point. At last check, they had just entered New York State. Nephew Allen said he changes to new shoes every 100 or 200 miles? Is that right, PJ?

10.12.19: 0530: No interruptions from pain, last night, but still tired this morning.

We attended the Gaslight Youth Theater this morning where Sabrina is performing in the play, YOU AIN’T NOTHIN’ BUT A WEREWOLF   She plays for two weekends. She has been acting at the Gaslight since age 6. Two shows a year. Fourteen different plays.  This doesn’t count the shows in her school drama department.  She is now 13.

1400: While PJ was napping, I cooked a stir-fry with salmon cakes.  The smell woke her. 2000: Arizona / Washington State football. We were massacred.

Arizona 28/ Washington State 68. There was a record, though: most touchdown passes thrown in a game. 

10.13.19: 0600: Awoke with leg pain again.  I decided to walk it out with PJ at Udall Park.  1,471 steps worked (pretty much) for me. That’s about a quarter of Udall.  We watched CBS Sunday Morning on Sunday morning!

About PD. Just because I don’t mention it all the time doesn’t mean that it isn’t present.  I just don’t dwell on it. Lately, I’ve noticed that I have to be aware of my backing while standing.  Such as standing at the refrigerator, getting the milk out of the door, stepping back, closing the door and turning to move to the counter with the milk. I have to think about what I’m about to do. Otherwise, I may lose my balance. I don’t talk and turn.  I think, then turn, then talk if needed. That’s why walking the floor ladder for Thresha is so essential.  Sometimes, I can do it with no problem. Other times, I have to speak the commands: Step in; Step out; etc., as I mentioned on page 1.

When at the computer, I try to limit myself to fifteen minutes of sitting, then get up and move and then come back to work. This seems to help my leg. I know I’m not getting as deep a sleep as I used to. Usually, after waking at 0230 or 0330, even if I do go back to sleep, it isn’t very restful. PJ told me that she heard me snoring lightly last evening. Tonight, I’ll wear my CPAP.  In the past three months, I have not had to use it.

10.14.19: 1000: Rotten peaches that dropped from our tree seem to delight the quail.  Note the “guard” on the top of the gate.

Three seconds later. Three guards.

They saw me! Can’t wait for the light to shine on them. Gotta shoot when I can. Advantage of cell phone: instant camera. (IF the thumbprint works and IF I remember the turn-on code!).1300: Clicking through video sites and came across the Battle of Midway from the Japanese POV. Educational. The U.S. was lucky. It follows the movie MIDWAY quite closely. Worked on my WIP for an hour.

Took PJ to Culver’s for a to-go dinner. We had dinner at home while watching Dancing With the Stars.

10.15.19: 0600: To do today: Bank (Done) – PDSG (Done) – 1600: Fix PJ’s Dorkey (Done) 1800: I cooked stir-fry, and we watched Monday’s recording of THE VOICE. Took an aspirin for the leg.

10/16.19: 0600:Ready for PT with Tresha.  I feel like I can MOVE a little more this morning. No problem with the leg. Bed by 2100.         

10.17.19: 0700: Slept soundly, last night.  I took PJ to Doctor and discovered the side effects of aspirin. I worked on my WIP. Dragon gave me so much trouble, I gave up and typed manually – still doing it.  1700: Got so frustrated that I quit and shot arrows for thirty minutes.  Felt better after that.  Today was the first day I shot since October 4th.  Good to shoot again.  I can still hit the target.

Time to fix dinner. We wound up watching two episodes of Doc Martin from Series 9.  We didn’t know it was still on. Enjoyed them. We went to bed at 2200.

10.18.19: 0630: There is a particular luxury in knowing that one can go back to bed. I did not return to bed by choice. (Just remembering the years when I did not have a choice.) Clouds today indicate it would be a good morning for walking.  Respecting SWOMBOW’S choice to stay in bed, I’ll not wake her. (Good idea, Sam.)

There is a sudden life in the Robert/Macensey Tree and night-blooming cereus .

FLASH! Julie called. We are going to see THE BIG BOY at the train yards. It is the largest gathering of onlookers that Union Pacific has ever had.  I refrained from pictures of the crowd. The BIG BOY was the reason we were there.  There were easily 1,000 people standing in line. A conductor told me that this crowd started at 0700 and continued to build throughout the morning. Police traffic control had cars lined up from three directions two miles away.  It took us three hours. Was it worth it?     Yes!

In 1939, my dad, who was the Station Agent at Ashfork, Arizona, took me on a switch engine – steam, of course. In 1953, I had my first ride in a diesel engine from Grand Canyon to Williams. I had special permission to ride with the engineer in the cab. There was another boy, four years younger, who rode with me. His name was Arthur MacArthur, IV., the son of General Douglas MacArthur!

We had late lunch at The Beef Master Meat Market on 29th Street. Julie dropped us off at home by 1530.

10.19.19: 0600: Today, we will see Sabrina’s final performance of You Ain’t Nothin’ but a Werewolf at the Gaslight Theater. (She has another tomorrow, but her group will not have leads.)

10.20.19: 0630: No church.  neither of us slept well. last night. Side effects of new medicines are happening. 0930: We took a ¼ of loop walk around Udall Park.

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