Parkinson’s in Peru

Saddened by Parkinson’s stories in Peru

Everyone is asking: Yes I am back at the gym training with my coach, trying crazy things. M y daughter, Amelia, has pointed out I am doing this wrong and how to fix it.
Little by little.

Thanks everyone for sharing and donating to the page:

Anything in addition to the target goes towards an educational campaign for patients, families and interested health professionals. Today I met with a Parkinson’s sufferer who has lost faith in doctores, who don’t give patients enough time to educate them properly, explain repercussions of drugs (like laxatives) nor the importance of nutrition, exercise, exercises for the voice, self care and the prevalence of depression and how to confront the disease. Looking back maybe I got more time, being the gringa because I was firing question after question despite noticing the doctores desire to say “next” written all over his/her face. But even then the responses were simple ” yes physiotherapy could help”. I am working one on one to educate but more is needed. I know I have been an encouragement but thinking of a team of people educated in Parkinson’s to deal with this nasty disease properly. People able to model love and kindness and willing to go to the regional centres too.

Joy personified

This is more information about a Parkinson’s meeting I attended in Lima in January. That may seem boring to some but the next two characters certainly ensured it was not boring. Also see previous blog about the shocking misdiagnosis of a lady who attended.


One of the first persons to meet us was a vibrant lady in her early 50’s who had had the disease since she was 28 years old. Lets call her “Joy” as that she was, she immediately told us her story, including the trials of being called a drunk but most of all she was encouraging people “keep moving”, “don’t cry” , “do exercise” and “you can do it”.

She was quite the chatterbox but I could see my friend who’d taken a 12 hour bus to meet me at the meeting moved by her positive example. I enjoyed seeing her encouraged by someone else to do all the things I’d been encouraging her to do. It was nice I could remain silent and let Joy do what came naturally. Thank God for people like Joy who inspire us.

Movement Therapist

She was a pocket rocket – small but strong. From the get go she had us eating from her hand as she sang huskily along to the music and moved her hips and arms as only a latino can. She asked us all to join in (as we could) and ‘feel’ the music. This was the warm up and people who’d been in tears minutes earlier sang along and moved with enthusiasm. What a great way to warm up that anyone can do – limited movement or not. Music warms the soul and helps you move and smile. The exercise therapist then taught the group some basic stretching movements.

Everyone had a great time and I joked she needed to come to Arequipa every week (1.5 hours by plane). She does have a regular slot in Lima where older folk can go and the association can pass on the details.  

Again the positive outcomes of  having Parkinson’s association meetings are clearcut. We can encourage each other and exercise together and I am hoping we can replicate in our city.

Gozo Personificada

Esta es más información sobre una reunión de Parkinson a la que asistí en Lima en enero. Eso puede parecer aburrido para algunos, pero los siguientes dos personajes sin duda aseguraron que no fuera aburrido. También vea el blog anterior sobre el sorprendente diagnóstico erróneo de una señora que asistió.

Una de las primeras personas que conocí fue una dama vibrante de unos 50 años que había contraído la enfermedad desde que tenía 28 años. Llamémosla “Alegría” como era, inmediatamente nos contó su historia, incluidas las pruebas de ser llamada borracha, pero sobre todo estaba animando a la gente a “seguir moviéndose”, “no llorar”, “hacer ejercicio”. Y usted puede hacerlo”.
Ella estaba bastante en el chatterbox pero pude ver a mi amiga que había tomado un autobús de 12 horas para reunirse conmigo en la reunión conmovida por su ejemplo positivo. Disfruté viéndola animada por alguien más para hacer todas las cosas por las que la había alentado. Fue agradable poder permanecer en silencio y dejar que Joy hiciera lo que era natural. Gracias a Dios por personas como Joy que nos inspiran.

Terapeuta de movimiento
Era un cohete de bolsillo, pequeña pero fuerte. Desde el principio, nos hizo comer de su mano mientras cantaba con la música y movía sus caderas y brazos como solo un latino puede. Nos pidió a todos que nos uniéramos (como pudiéramos) y “sintiéramos” la música. Este fue el calentamiento y las personas que habían estado llorando minutos antes cantaban y se movían con entusiasmo. Qué gran manera de calentar que cualquiera puede hacer, movimiento limitado o no. La música calienta el alma y te ayuda a moverse y sonreír. El terapeuta de ejercicios enseñó al grupo algunos movimientos básicos de estiramiento.
Todos la pasaron muy bien y yo bromeaba que ella necesitaba venir a Arequipa cada semana (1.5 horas en avión). Ella reside en Lima, donde la gente mayor puede ir y la asociación puede transmitir los detalles.

Nuevamente, los resultados positivos de tener reuniones de la asociación de Parkinson son claros. Podemos animarnos mutuamente y hacer ejercicio juntos, y espero que podamos replicar en nuestra ciudad.