Inspirational words from Michael J. Fox about his Parkinson's that apply to us, too

I heard Michael J. Fox speak a year ago. It was when I was just losing my hair and very depressed and angry. I came away from his talk feeling inspired and uplifted. When I saw him speak, he couldn't stand or sit still, and was constantly fighting his body's involuntary movements. The new TIME magazine (April 27, 2009 issue) has "10 Questions" with him. I'd like to share a few of the questions. Every time it says "Parkinson's disease", substitute "Alopecia":

Q: How do you keep your optimism in the face of difficult circumstances?
A: I think it's mostly about acceptance. I have no choice about whether or not I have Parkinson's. I have nothing but choices about how I react to it. In those choices, there's freedom to do a lot of things in areas I otherwise wouldn't have found myself in.

Q: Have you ever felt cheated by having Parkinson's disease?
A: No, absolutely not. It's been a detour that I wouldn't have planned, but it's really led me to amazing places....(he goes on to describe making a difference in people's lives through advocacy)

Q: Have you ever found yourself embarrassed by your disease?
A: Yes, early on, certainly. Now I feel and I say all the time that vanity is, like, long gone. I'm really free of worrying about what I look like, because it's out of my shaky hands. I don't control it. So why would I waste a second of my life worrying about it?

Now re-read, especially the last one. I think I'll go out and buy his two memoirs. The newest one is called "Always Looking Up".

All I have is alopecia.

Hugs to all,

Views: 74

Comment by JeffreySF on April 19, 2009 at 12:34pm
Thanks for sharing this Mary.
I feel good.

Comment by Heather L on April 19, 2009 at 1:10pm
Hey Mary,

Thanks for the great blog- I very much need reminding some days to count my blessings and not focus on what it wrong! Michael J Fox has so many lessons to teach the world how to deal with adversity. I have seen a few interviews with him and read his first book. ( l' d like to read his latest!) I was pleasantly surprised to see how funny he is- I bet it was wonderful to see him live!

Something he said that really struck me was "“Nobody would choose to have a disease visited upon them. Still, Parkinson's forced me to make a fundamental life decision: adopt a siege mentality - or embark upon a life journey.” A decision at one point or another we all will have to make....

Thanks Mary!
Comment by Rose Marie' on April 19, 2009 at 7:22pm

I think this is great - what a fab attitude.

Thanks for posting.

Comment by Jennifer Krahn on April 20, 2009 at 9:39pm
Thanks for the posting. There is alot to take away with this one.
Comment by Mary on October 8, 2009 at 10:34am
You're welcome, Tina!
Comment by Stephanie on October 15, 2009 at 1:30pm
I like, " ... a detour I wouldn't have planned ..." and that will be my mantra today. Thank you for sharing this, Mary.
Comment by Mary on October 15, 2009 at 4:08pm
Yes, Stephanie...this interview really says it all.
Comment by Michelle L on June 18, 2010 at 12:09am
"I don't control it. So why would I waste a second of my life worrying about it?" - I like that. It is SO true and I am trying every day to embrace it. Thanks for posting, Mary!~
Comment by Mary on June 18, 2010 at 12:19am
You're welcome! I really think these words are amazingly appropriate for us.
Comment by Marissa L. on June 23, 2010 at 10:35am
I agree with the quote " I don't control it. So why would I waste a second of my life worrying about it? Even though its sometimes hard not to worry about it. It does help to realize and come to the conclusion of acceptance. :)


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