Recovery from Chronic Illness

You will be inspired by listening to my interview this week with Alice Holstein who discusses her remarkable recovery from chronic illness.

Alice A. Holstein, Ed.D was diagnosed with bipolar mood disorder at the age of 51, which interrupted her career and produced some 12 years of intense suffering with many manic episodes, many hospitalizations, thousands of dollars spent and overall, a bleak prognosis of recovery.  She lives now, as an elder, with a full if careful life of extraordinary wellness despite still being on medication. She has a dramatic story to share about how she developed a revolutionary understanding of mental health recovery which she believes can be at least partially related to recovery with Parkinsons.

In her presentation she will explain this potential correlation by first enumerating the comparisons, such as that she too was given a bleak prognosis and told that heavy medication was required. She also understands that Parkinson’s can often produce depression in those who suffer. Her thoughts can help people specifically deal with that diagnosis. Alice believes that illness in general should be treated as a whole person approach—holistically, to include mental, emotional, physical, spiritual and social aspects. The medical profession does not proceed in this fashion. She accidentally discovered this more complete framework and has developed specific understandings that may be helpful to those dealing with Parkinsons. She also believes that recovery is partly a matter of developing one’s higher consciousness.

Her ideas and words will likely challenge, inspire and encourage the listeners on this broadcast to continue and add to the kinds of things they already are doing to improve their conditions vs. degenerate. Her example serves as a beacon of hope to living a healthier life regardless of one’s diagnosis, going beyond present practices to achieve stronger wellness and increased satisfaction. There are no panaceas, however. The climb and the journey can be a difficult one. Having vision and encouragement, however are critical to success. Intention is everything. You must want to be healthier and work at it over time.

Her website is    (link provided by her website developer) Her books are shown on the slide for this show. Note that BEYOND TURMOIL was written under her married name, Alice Mack.

Here are the questions Alice answers:

What do you think are the major comparison’s between dealing with Parkinsons and dealing with mental illness? Why can this framework be a potentially helpful recovery correlation?

What is the essence of your dramatic recovery story and how you gained your expertise?

What are some of the specific things you did to get well?

Why is the brain so important in healing?

*Note: Alice’s website at www.aliceholstein has an article, “Heal Yourself and You Heal the Culture” which is pertinent. Go to the “site map” and look for this title. See also another title, “Things Helpers and Helpees Can Do.”

What part did going back to work at age 65 have to do with your recovery?

What role might volunteering or otherwise minimal work contribute to recovery?

What part did participating in a Spiritual Companioning Preparation program (3 years) contribute?

What do you mean by “The Hero’s Journey” and why it may be important to wellness?

What do you mean by saying that a Parkinson diagnosis and mental illness are whole person illnesses?

What do you mean by saying that suffering can be a purifying experience?

How did you manage to survive while living periodically on the streets in your 60s?

How do you maintain your wellness?

How much do you estimate your illness cost?

What was the hardest aspect of your illness that you dealt with?

What is the largest gift you’ve received from surviving and thriving?

What are your 2 books about mental illness and will they help me deal with Parkinsons? What about the 1992 book, written under my married name, Mack? Does it possibly relate as well?

Interested in hearing other ground breaking stories of successful journeys down the road to recovery? Join my 25 Cent Wisdom Patreon group. It is free to join. Visit the platform, add your email and create a password and you are in!
25 Cent Wisdom

Robert Rodgers PhD
Founder 2004
Parkinsons Recovery

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