woman with red hair and plum shawl looking directly into the camera over red spectacles.

Money is Everything

Posted Leave a commentPosted in job seeking, Parkinson's disease

I had written a great piece about people with Parkinson’s (pwp) and how the media portrays them, however, I’m also worried it is a potential political nightmare. For now, I’m keeping it under wraps. Instead I’m going to talk about the struggle to know what the right thing is when you’re stumbling through the dark looking for a clear way forward. There are many sidelines. So many things I could choose to do. Yet the thing that appeals the most and I keep returning to are my people skills. I know I am great at getting people on board, behind ideas, convincing them to run along with me. In the current climate of rising unemployment, even getting anyone to consider giving me an interview without recent paid work by an institution is difficult.   Why is it people put so much weight behind paid employment by companies? I’ve dealt with very difficult customers (have you looked after four children?), project managed large ambitious ideas (nobody believed that Waikanae Air Scouts could ever exist) and managed large scale events. (Wings Over Wairarapa.) Yet people place no value on any of the outstanding things I achieved through Scouts NZ because it’s free. […]

cartoon image of a woman with a child in her arm.

World Domination Draws Closer

Posted Leave a commentPosted in NZLockdown, Parkinson's disease

I was to write you a nice post about something other than Parkinson’s today. However, those lovely people at Parkinson’s Life sent me this lovely article. It’s especially nice as I’m in it, and my lovely friend Emma from The Parky Ninja. Enjoy. You can find the article HERE. Also on Parkinson’s Life is this awesome video from Christine Jeyachandran  It might also feature a certain recognisable Yorkshirewoman. Yes. My quest for World Domination is well underway.  

image of open laptop and notebook.

Economic Downturn

Posted Leave a commentPosted in job seeking, Parkinson's disease

And so. I have become another victim of the Covid-19 economic downturn. I received a phone call about the job I had been told I was successful for. The one that they needed filling immediately. The one that was still needed, but slightly delayed due to level 4. Perhaps Mid May. Yes. All being well around there. But no. Ah. The dangers of working (potentially) for a charity or non-profit. Lack of resources. Full restructure. Employment freeze. And I get it. Of course I do. But I wanted that role so badly. For so many reasons, both selfish (I need a job – I need the money badly) and also altruistically. (It was a position where I could have helped others very much.) But it is not to be. Possibly. In a few months. After the restructure. They may call. They may not. I have to rethink. There has been much to rethink recently.   And so. Back to the drawing board and trawling employment sites and looking for suitable roles. The issue here is of course gaining attention. I’m told I’m over qualified for some, but under qualified for others. Usually this is recruiter-speak for ‘not currently employed’ or […]

world map in green bordered by the faces of people from the video.

Inspire, Work Hard, Get Results

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Parkinson's disease, public speaker

Right now I’m finding it hard to type. My left hand is annoyingly unresponsive without a little extra oomph from me. It’ll come good in a bit, I recently took my tablets. I’m still bad at taking them on time. It’s not that I don’t know I have to, it’s more like a silent rebellion. “I don’t need you! I can do this, look I’m actually doing really well.” Then it’s like hitting a wall. Erk. Rats. If I hadn’t waited I wouldn’t have crashed and now wouldn’t be waiting for the most unattractive / desirable coming ‘up’ there is. Though of course for those of us with Parkinson’s, ‘coming up’ is exactly what we want. We need those little suckers to do the trick and help make our bodies move again. But I talked of this a couple of weeks ago, you don’t need to hear that again, do you?   Last week saw the end of Parkinson’s Awareness Month. Irritatingly overshadowed by this thing called Covid-19. Not to let a little thing like a global pandemic get in our way, we’ve still tried to do bits here and there. I was stoked to be asked to join in […]

image of tablets in a bottle and a blister pack

I Forgot

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Parkinson's disease

At times like this I detest Parkinson’s. I’ve been remiss. I forgot to take my tablets. I’m lucky, my tablets work well, but I took the last lot at 11.30am as scheduled and I forgot until now, 07.00pm to take the next lot. I was distracted, I was eating dinner with my family. It’s Easter, we made chocolate cupcakes with buttercream and tiny chocolate eggs for dessert. God knows how difficult it’s been to find Easter Eggs this year. And I just forgot. Bitter Little Pill And now my arm is heavy, as is my neck and head. I hate that. I mean, movement is coming back to me, even as I type this I’m feeling better. However, it’s that awful realisation that despite all the smiling, all the laughter, all the “hey, let’s be positive!” I can’t actually cope without taking my pills. Without my medication, my limbs feel strange, like I’m excessively tired. I feel that my body is failing. I’m working out every day. I’ve recently got into yoga, and it’s helping, I can feel it. Despite this, None of it means anything without my pills. I’m a woman of science. I believe in medication. I know […]

the word motivate in rainbow coloured felt tips.

What is a Motivational Speaker?

Posted Leave a commentPosted in motivational, public speaker

Just what is a motivational speaker? It’s a word that’s used so much, I hear it often, yet what is expected of the person that claims to motivate and inspire? For me, it’s connecting to my audience. It doesn’t matter if it’s a room of retirees or a room of corporates and politicians, understanding who you are talking to is vitally important. It’s key to the atmosphere you want to create. Connecting on a personal level is vital. How can you help someone if you just tell them a boring lump of facts about yourself? A good speaker can touch every person in a room and encourage them to realise that they themselves have the power within them to succeed in their chosen path. This connection is what’s so important. Nobody really cares about your story at first. The times I’ve heard “Oh, it’s a talk about Parkinson’s.” and I think “I really must re-word this talk!” I am so much more than an irritating incurable disease. Another overused yet apt word is of course, storytelling. What I do is weave an intriguing tale. You’re pulled in and travel along with me. Sharing the lows and the highs right there […]

image of kitty in a red hat in a field of sunflowers.

Just Another Person With Parkinson’s

Posted 3 CommentsPosted in motivational, Parkinson's disease, public speaker

This week I completed a set of questions for Parkinson’s Life magazine. It got me thinking about how people perceive those with Parkinson’s Disease.   My talks cover that off too of course, and it’s something I’ve pondered myself. I sometimes wonder what my friends truly think of this, and my efforts to continue life as normally as possible. I know some of them think I’m crazy. Some of them think I’m deluded and I’ll drop dead early, and some of them think it’s great and I’m going to be just fine regardless of my affliction. In the end it doesn’t really matter what any of them think. This is ultimately my fight, my battle. Not only physically, but mentally. It would be oh so easy to simply give in. Instead I’m at the gym most days, and despite my fear of falling over my own feet, today I have vowed to get out and go running again. Stealth Fighter I hate running. But I hate Parkinson’s more. I despise this thing that’s taken me by surprise. Stealthily trying to hold me back, contain my body and with it, my spirit and drive to succeed. I hate going to the gym, […]

silhouette of person outstretched arms on a boulder

You don’t have to climb a mountain or rock to be amazing. (But it does make a great picture.)

Posted Leave a commentPosted in motivational, public speaker

This week is about impostor syndrome and motivation. And the very real fact that occasionally we get stuck because of ourselves. It’s crazy. If your friend came up with a great idea you’d tell them to just get on with it. But when we have a good idea ourselves, what do we do? We sit on it. We throw barriers and issues into our own paths and procrastination becomes the order of the day. “we can’t because…” and that idea slowly slips away, or worse, you see someone else carrying out a similar one and being amazingly successful. What can we do about it? It’s an easy thing to say, but a harder thing to do, but forcing yourself to sit down and set some real goals and ambitions is vital. I’ve had an idea for some time to boost my profile in and around the Kāpiti Coast where I live. What have I done with it so far? Nothing. Nada. Zip. What am I afraid of? Will people laugh at me? (Well, I’m also a comedian, so you know, hopefully!) Will they think I’m daft / stupid / foolish / insert negative emotion here. At heart we’re scared of […]

kitty in a floral dress speaking to an audience of people.

Don’t Panic!

Posted Leave a commentPosted in motivational, Parkinson's disease, Uncategorized

Crowding In I had the absolute pleasure of speaking at the Combined Probus Club of Kapiti today , and what a wonderful group of people they are. They certainly turned up in force, over one hundred and forty people packed into the lounge area of the Coast Community Church building to hear what I had to say. No Pressure It’s sometimes daunting to speak to a large number, especially when you are aware that some of them suffer from the very affliction that you’re there to impart your wisdom on, but I love what I do, and was determined to not allow the words of Keith who introduced me, put me off. What lovely words too, he described me as “the most amazing woman I have ever met, aside from my wife of course!” High praise indeed. No pressure. Added to that his wife has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s for about six years, and he has a degree in neuro-science. Did I mention there was no pressure?! Flying High They laughed, they groaned, they gave me the most wonderful feedback. I appear to be collecting gift boxes too. I received a beautiful Kapiti Goodies box, I’m sure that will go […]

image of kitty smiling into the camera with red flowers in the background.

Recovered

Posted 1 CommentPosted in motivational, Parkinson's disease, public speaker, Uncategorized

Holidays Are For: Ah. Public holidays. When the nice thing to do is visit a park with your family, do something lovely or just spend time together. We spent time together. Sorting laundry, ironing and catching up on housework. Nobody ever lay on their death bed and lamented they didn’t spend more time cleaning, but it is nice to have a shiny house. Scouting Strife I also had a word with myself and realised it had been just a tiny bit longer than a month since my last blog post. So much for monthly. Though to be fair, I’ve had a double birthday, Christmas, the 22nd Scout Jamboree and a family camping trip to contend with. You don’t want to go camping a few days after you’ve spent eleven days camping with 3,500 Scouts. Just saying. Trust me on that one. The holiday was fun but fraught with issues such as “I’m really tired.” And I was delighted to see my own bed again. Sweat It Baby I also made it back to the gym, which was great. I think. Only I could spend 12 months at the gym and not actually look any better. I think there’s a lesson […]