My first thoughts upon waking are about my children. Are they happy? Are they feeling enough love? Then I consider all the people I love and the kind woman who called to let me know something I'd written helped her get through dark days.

My next thoughts: 
How can I best use the resources that I have today for the greater good? I owe a great debt, because I've been given a lot, and I'm still extremely capable as a creative.

Today is the day I'll tackle that list, submit the writing I promised, and send all these thank you cards. I dream my writing will finally be legible and polished, with language that reaches absolutely everyone.

Or...

Maybe today all I can manage is not falling down stairs while hoisting ridiculous amounts of laundry and boxes of books. Darn you, Marie Kondo...I prefer my walls lines with books!

I'll return 17 phone calls and catch up on bills and return hundreds (or thousands?) of emails, or not. I can always finish home projects later- the kid's bedrooms, kitchen cabinets, winter garden, that hole in the floor everyone trips on. A sense I've forgotten something important interrupts my calm.

Or...

I'll walk into Pleasant Hill and get some real coffee (Who bought this decaf? Are they insane?). My dog is looking out the widow holding a bright red leash in his mouth.

Managing expectations has been quite humbling with Parkinson's relentless hammering. Time is slipping away, but my feet suddenly decide walking is not a good idea. I limp away from the dog to find a comfortable spot to meditate and ruminate without coffee.

California is so lovely, even in the rain. I count my blessings, overflowing with gratitude for the small things. There is an ever-present feeling of sadness mixed with horror at my predicament too though.

Rarely do I lie down during daylight hours, though working with a serious sleep deficit makes me forgetful. I think of all the PwP pushing through work and family obligations and feel inspired by their stories. There are ninjas in our midst who, in spite of chronic pain and agony, push on through.

Even sleep can be precarious- during short naps I have vivid nightmares due to sleep paralysis. The meds I must take to remain mobile have side effects even during slumber, including a disturbing sense of being dragged off the bed and down the hallway by something I cannot see.

I am not afraid of monsters though, because the only real threat to me is me.

c. Photo is a still from filming with Anders M. Leines.