Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Martha Speaks

Post 54
Martha checking in here.  I thought it would be good to add my voice to Michael’s Adventure.  After all, I am along for the ride.
Thus far, there has not been much for me to do in the way of caretaking.  He is not disabled to the point where I have to pick up on his chores.  There are some things, in my opinion, he shouldn’t do anymore (like climb up on a ladder and paint the attic windows) but he does them anyway.  So it’s not like I’ve picked up any extra work. In fact, he pitches in more on the small chores since he spends more time at home.
What I have to do is move more slowly and wait.  This has been from the very beginning.  The first symptom that was evident to me was his apparent inability to keep pace on our regular walks.   I’d be walking along and suddenly realize he was falling behind. 
“Come on, Mike, keep up.” I’d say, with some impatience.
“What’s your hurry” he’d reply.
We studied his gait to try to understand what was happening.  His arms hung down at his sides while he walked.
“Swing your arms,” I told him.
He’d swing them, but it was unnatural.  His steps were one-two, one- two and his arms swung, one-two- three, one-two-three.  He had to ask me which foot went with which arm.
Once we got a diagnosis, I accepted his slowness. Medications returned his arm swing to almost normal. 
The biggest negative to date in this Parkinson’s adventure is that we’re both gaining weight.  Michael has always been my exercise partner, but now that the dynamics have changed, I’ll have to adjust our diet  to match. I do insist that we continue to exercise and walk, but I have to pull hard on the leash to get him out.
Funny thing is that once he gets out, he loves it. 

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