I Beat Parkinson’s Disease at the Baehr Challenge!
Driving to the Baehr Challenge Obstacle Course, I was feeling stressed, convinced I could not complete the course. My initial plan was to observe and cheer-on the participants. After I checked in and received my t-shirt, I was standing in line to begin the Course; I was even more stressed.I was an athlete in my pre-Parkinson’s Life, being diagnosed at age 49. Getting through the obstacles would now be a major challenge for me, due to the PD. The disease impacts every part of my life, each and every day. I have to push myself to walk and be “normal”, timing my meds to complete everyday tasks. I have poor balance and am embarrassed by my shaking.
I was so afraid of going through the obstacles, I thought I would embarrass myself. I did not think that I could do it. I was scared. Getting through the obstacles was a major challenge. Once I started with traversing the tire obstacle, I was determined to finish the course. I felt empowered to rise to the occasion. Going through the bouncy house I fell several times, and began laughing out loud, as I was determined to meet the challenge and succeed. I was actually having fun! I got through that obstacle and sat on top of the hay pyramid and finished the course. I felt like my “old self”.
I did it, I succeeded! It was a great feeling to beat PD today, and I completed the Baehr Challenge like a true athlete!
I am grateful to the Baehr Family and their fight against PD. The course promotes camaraderie and inspires all the Parky’s to participate.
I had been to the Baehr Challenge in previous years, reluctant to do the obstacles, sitting on the sidelines. A friend urged me to try the obstacle course this year.
Six months ago, I started Rock Steady Boxing. This program improved my balance, built confidence and inspired me to come out of my isolation. It has helped my PD symptoms tremendously and built strength. I am looking forward to doing the Baehr Challenge next year, and I want other PD friends to give it a try. All the obstacles are fun and challenging. I am confident that others with PD can succeed and overcome their doubts about crossing the finish line. Parkinson’s disease was not going to win that day!