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On Playing the Mandolin as Therapy

Rating: 1 votes, 5.00 average.
I have been a member in the Mandolin Cafe for most of 2014 and I have truly appreciated the ideas, education, support and friendship that has been fostered in this forum. Thanks to all!

I have a brain disease that is a rarer form of Parkinson's, is faster progressing than typical P.D. and tends to cause more disability. I am not able to drive or work in my chosen profession any longer, and I deal with a variety of problems such as tremors and mobility issues, among other things. In the meantime, there is music!

As a lifelong guitar player and singer of my own songs, I have always relied on my music to sustain me. Rediscovering the mandolin after starting it briefly in 1981-82 and then putting it down until 2013, has been a great joy. Your Cafe has brought me contacts who have fed my musical soul and allowed me to sink my teeth into this beautiful instrument.

I went a little nuts there for several months buying and selling instruments in order to get to better mandolins. I have made some sacrifices of blues guitars and amps in order to do this, but I haven't regretted it. Now, I am finding that I pick up the mandolin exclusively and have to remind myself to to grab my guitars to keep my "Parkie" hands strong and limber enough to play the bigger, longer instrument. "Use it or lose it" the neurologists will tell those of us with brain conditions such as Parkinson's.

I am thankful and wanted to express it. Tomorrow I am playing a small gig at a church with my son and for the first time, I will accompany him. In past years, he was my drummer and keyboardist. Now, I am going to sing his harmony and play my Kentucky KM-1000 to add to his acoustic sound. What joy and therapy the mandolin is!

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  1. Richard J's Avatar
    Congrats. Playing a mandolin was also my key therapy for my short time memory side effort from my traumatic brain injury. Everyday I play I get better & better, not just as mandolist but as a survivor.
  2. Jandante's Avatar
    Inspiring to read your post. God Bless.
  3. PaulBills's Avatar
    Thank you for sharing this with us xx Keep well
  4. lflngpicker's Avatar
    Thanks to Richard J, Jandante and PaulBills for your responses. I didn't expect such fulfillment from an online forum, but I have come to look forward to this connection.