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How extreme is extreme?

PD Warrior is supposed to be extreme exercise. Power Through is an exercise programme to make you “Power Up”, tensing muscles, straightening up, moving quickly and purposefully, with strong controlled movements.  And boxing? You need quick reactions, strength to withstand the “kickback” from the trainer’s pads, reasonable posture so as not to fall forward whilst sparring, good foot movement “float like a butterfly” ( before you “sting like a bee” , except we won’t be doing any stinging ) and stamina to keep it going for an hour or so. I can do this.

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Tears at its first outing

Oh dear! “Can we talk about it?” had its first public reading last night and there were tears. Not those of the kind and rather embarrassed audience from the Bristol Festival of literature, but mine. Just when you think you’ve got this thing under control …

Thank you to Sian Norris for organising the event and to the other contributors, who shared their own very personal experiences in verse. I loved it.  An email compilation would be wonderful. Sian?

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New views?

Bit worried why “new views” of the website aren’t translating into book purchases. Don’t you like it? Does it cost more than you want to pay? Is it inappropriate for your situation? You can mail me and tell me. I might not agree, but will respond. Thanks.

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Buddy binge ahead of Portland, Oregon

I have a “Buddy” called Melody. Shhh – we are members of  “Secret Group”, by invitation only. Neither of us has been very prolific on the site. I had a mail reminding me. So this morning, I have had a “buddy binge” and it feels so good … partly cathartic, expunging my guilt, no doubt. I have ” liked” and “commented” on lots of events, posts and people. Click, click, click. I spent a good couple of hours, bingeing. There were some fascinating posts, videos, testimonies. And I was humbled. We here in the UK have a bit of a “Monty Python” mind-set. A ready laugh, a cynical remark,  just a little bit of mockery – lighten up. So it was a sobering moment spent reading of a 21 year-old diagnosed with Early Onset Parkinson’s, an 83 year old who has walked the distance from his home town to Portland, covering 12 miles every day for the last two and a half years, as a homage to his wife, who has PD. Partners of 20 years or more, still laughing together, a newly-diagnosed young man, learning to control the volume of his voice and the clarity of his speech, so that he could propose to his beautiful fiancee. I shall be at the “Buddies meet-up”. Looking forward to meeting you, Melody.

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Final Countdown to World Parkinson’s Congress Portland

It’s only 5 days away and now it’s starting to feel real. 500 copies of the new book are arriving on Thursday – I hope – and at 4 a.m. on Friday, we leave.
Today I am going to re-write this website, with the help of son Julian. It has more new views every day, but nothing is happening on it. But wait for it …
Did I say I was going to post every day? I’d better have something more interesting than this to say, then.
” … be there dragons …?” The roaring woke me up this morning, an unusually clear, bright morning with 2 large red hot air balloons right above the house. By the time I had fumbled about, found my phone – and my glasses – the balloons were too far away to see clearly. But the roar took me back to the early days of the Balloon Fiesta when up to 100 hot air balloons would come this way, 3 at a time over the house. Why the change since then? Change in wind direction caused by … the jet stream? El Nino? climate change? My memory? Ha!
On this very special “National Grandparents’ Day”, I shall be positive. To those of you lucky enough to have and to hold, Happy Day.

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A “New” testimonial, from 2014

I snagged a copy of Dawn’s wonderful book to pass the time, 27 Sept. 2014
By Constance Williams – See all my reviews
This review is from: Does It Hurt, Granny? (Paperback)
I came across this book completely by accident. Fortune placed me on a stand next to the author at a local event today and in some down time between talking to passers by, I snagged a copy of Dawn’s wonderful book to pass the time.

What a fabulous move! I will be the first to admit that I am probably not the intended audience. I’m a thirty-something without children, but it doesn’t take much to be able to see what a fabulous resource this book is. A simple, child-centred look at why granny may sometimes have problems doing things because she has Parkinsons, ‘Does It Hurt, Granny’ approaches the subject from a very positive ‘can do’ angle. It stresses all the things that someone living with Parkinsons can still achieve, illustrating (quite beautifully – this book is sublime for the art alone!) that ‘Granny’ is so much more than her disease and that she still has all the wants and loves and desires of every other person, whilst stressing that, some days ‘Granny’ will have a bad day and that on those days, she needs understanding and the knowledge that that bad day is just a day – tomorrow may be better.

I found this approach to the subject sensitive to both the person with Parkinsons, and the need of children to be able to understand without being scared. It is also a great way in to explaining what’s going on for all of those children who are related to people who have Parkinsons, but where they are still living very independent lives.

I would recommend this book to everyone (I know I learned from it as well!) and hope that it will start appearing in schools and children’s groups.

(Note: I didn’t know I was actually talking to the author until well after I had formulated my opinion of this book!)

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Thank you Reading Buddies from Badock’s Wood school

Thank you to year 6 Reading Buddies, Cain, Faisal, Sebastian, Mason, Matda, Taya, Crystal, Chayanne, Logan and Nathan for your enthusiastic welcome on Monday.
Thank you, too, to your very special teacher, Mrs Knight and to Mrs Pitt, for inviting me.

I will send Mrs Knight some of my poems for you to illustrate. The illustrations will have to be dark enough for me to be able to scan them.
Shall we try to get them published?

I hope you enjoy sharing the books with younger pupils in the school.

If you, or any other pupils, want to know more about Parkinson’s, please look at this link on my website

Parkinson’s on KidsHealth.org

or go to Parkinson’s UK home page and browse around.

My very best wishes


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