Even four years after my husband’s passing, I still have trouble breathing.  I still find myself holding my breath in an attempt to suppress the pain.  This article is helpful and I will take its advice.


On May 2, 2018, I wrote this.  Its in my book Parkinson’s: A Love Story with Dementia for Dessert.

Holding My Breath Doesn’t Help

Holding my breath doesn’t help. It doesn’t work at all really

I know because I tried for years
Tensing up muscles in anticipation of the hurt

Squinting my eyes hoping not to see harsh realities so clearly
Fear of fear. Afraid of pain and the energy required to face it and to let it go
I have two good reasons: Parkinson’s and Lewy-body dementia

My dear husband Richard’s illnesses and death took so much out of us all
Fear of not knowing how to manage, knowing it would never be enough
Knowing there would be no happy ending

Fear of not being able to provide. Not being able to stop his pain. Or mine
Fear of living without him. Fear of being alone

It’s hard work to hold one’s breath for years
A failed attempt at suppression. Delay of inevitable truths

But suppression of the bad also means suppression of the good
The joy and beauty of life can get sidelined

Not noticing when birds sing and children laugh

Gratitude diminished or forgotten
I’m slowly letting go of the fear and pain

And feeling lighter, with eyes open wider

Breathing more freely and deeply.  Someday it will be my norm


You will find my book Parkinson’s: A Love Story with Dementia for Dessert on Amazon.  https://www.amazon.com/Parkinsons-Love-Story-Dementia-Dessert-ebook/dp/B07K4RLC2D/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1542135434&sr=8-1&keywords=Parkinson%27s+A+Love+Story+with+Dementia+for+Dessert&dpID=41xS3edPH0L&preST=_SY445_QL70_&dpSrc=srch Your feedback and reviews are most welcome.

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