Bishop’s Stortford Independent Parkinality columnist Julie Walker on why the Covid-19 pandemic has made 2020 the year of the Hokey Cokey

Parkinality columnist Julie Walker, of Bishop’s Stortford, writes not about parking, but about residing with Parkinson’s disease in her 50s…

2020 has been the 12 months of the Hokey Cokey (bear with me).

The whole planet, at various situations, has been instructed to be either ‘in’ or ‘out’. Despite the fact that I believe that people with Parkinson’s disease (PD) have been the only ones to genuinely enter into the spirit of factors by in fact ‘shaking it all about’.

Covid-19 has triggered so quite a few cancellations and restrictions that, for quite a few of us, our greatest accomplishment this 12 months has been booking a supermarket time slot. However, I have managed to select out a particular spotlight, obstacle and lowlight from 2020.


No highlights – hairdressers shut. Despite the fact that thank you to Ian from Brookes hairdressing who arrived out to do an unexpected emergency haircut in the backyard garden in the summer time.


Hand washing. Washing arms is equivalent to strolling – equally entail a concept originating in the mind currently being transmitted, applying dopamine, to the physique to shift.

Frequent audience will know that for people with PD the space of the mind which makes dopamine is dying.

My mind might be indicating ‘wash your arms now, clean them completely, equally sides and amongst your fingers’. However, when dopamine concentrations are small and signs are kicking off, the concept from my mind to my arms is likely to get lost.

Hand washing becomes a actual battle with my fingers increasingly rigid. The more I try out, the more stressed I get, the more dopamine depletes and the fewer I am ready to shift.


Lockdown. The restrictions on going out have been tricky for everyone. For me, personally, I see socialising as portion of my ‘medical toolkit’. This is not just an excuse to go to the pub, trustworthy.

Julie and partner Andy Johnson in the Star (43199268)
Julie and associate Andy Johnson in the Star (43199268)

Pre Covid, when PD signs begun to kick off I would normally go out. From practical experience, being in won’t existing quite a few possibilities for dopamine creation, getting currently squeezed all the fun out of vacuuming.

That is a joke. I really don’t vacuum. On the other hand, even though I know that it will be a battle, going out usually has more dopamine-manufacturing possibilities.

Chatting with mates and laughter all make me happy and feel good which can enable increase dopamine creation, in transform lessening PD signs.

Hunting in advance to 2021, and placing corny jokes aside, my PD signs have deteriorated for the duration of lockdown and lifestyle is turning out to be increasingly complicated. I was struggling to find positivity for the new 12 months when the PD Avengers web-site popped into my inbox.

The PD Avengers’ top aim is to stop Parkinson’s disease. Inspired to get action by the reserve Ending Parkinson’s by four of the top Parkinson’s industry experts in the planet – Bas Bloem, PhD, MD, Michael S. Okun, MD, Ray Dorsey, MD and Todd Sherer, PhD – the PD Avengers are a world wide alliance of people with PD, companions and mates, standing together to demand adjust in how the disease is found and handled.

A person of their aims is to get a person million voices to signal up to turn out to be PD Avengers and display their allegiance. Right after four months they have currently attained 38 nations around the world.

A person of their methods is to ‘think local, go global’. So, in the exact same way as I generate this local newspaper column for the Indie in the United kingdom, as a result of the energy of social media that a person local voice can access about the planet.

You might are living with Parkinson’s. I incorporate not only the man or woman diagnosed with PD, but also their mates and family – there is more than a person target. Or your only relationship with PD might be looking through this column. Be sure to get a appear at their web-site and my limited movie. If you would like to increase your self to the record, you should sign up for us at

PD Avengers (43199238)
PD Avengers (43199238)

I appear forward to 2021 with renewed enthusiasm that a person working day the planet could be absolutely free of PD.

I want you good luck in creatively producing Xmas and appear forward to a more good new 12 months.

Fingers crossed and continue to be risk-free.

P.S. Would not it be odd if the Hokey Cokey is genuinely what it truly is all about?