I retired from the Prescott Fire Department after 24 years of service. I was an avid hiker. I worked out regularly and built sets for a local theatre. For Tim Sheehan, life was good! However, on one of my weekly hikes in 2010, I noticed a bit of a drag in my left leg. No worries. I am right side dominant. I also noticed my left index finger and thumb tapping mildly together. I was mostly curious, no alarm. Because these symptoms persisted, I saw a neurologist who diagnosed me with cervical spine issues caused by age related arthritis that were a normal part of aging.
Fast forward to 2016. My wife and I relocated to Sun City Grand. The finger tapping and foot dragging were slightly more prominent. Relocation meant new doctors. My new primary care physician interviewed me and gently told me he believed I had Parkinson’s Disease. The local neurologist confirmed the diagnosis.
The Parkinson’s community in the west valley is quite robust. The Parkinson’s diagnosis did not mean I was going to fight the stiffness, gait irregularities, tremor, dyskinesia, facial masking and isolation alone. There are support groups, classes and exercise groups to help manage the condition.The diagnosis need not be devastating.
The group I most look forward to attending is the Tremble Clefs musical support group. North West Tremble Clefs, directed by music therapist Sun Joo Lee, which meets at the Sun City West Christian Church, 20803 N 151 Ave, Sun City West every Tuesday morning at 9:00 a.m. Tremble Clefs Arizona a 501(c)3 tax exempt organization has had a presence in the west valley since 2008. The Sun City West site is new, only operating since summer.
Tremble Clefs welcomes anyone with Parkinson’s Disease and their caregivers. The group practices exercises to improve posture and strengthen voice as well as singing to help delay one of Parkinson’s onerous outcomes which is loss of normal vocal abilities. In a joyful supportive atmosphere Sun Joo leads the group through movement, stretching, beat keeping and vocalizing. Our voices strengthen. Our spirits, balance and memory improve. This therapy is fun! Many in the group live in Sun City Grand. You can learn about the benefits of music therapy on the TrembleClefsArizona.org web site. Anyone with Parkinson’s is encouraged to check us out. You can call new member contact Beth Lee at 623-556-6048 or just drop in and pay us a visit on Tuesday morning!
Tim Sheehan is a board member of Tremble Clefs Arizona. Tim was active in the West Side Tremble Clefs and stepped forward to lead the newly formed North West Tremble Clefs group which meets in Sun City West. Originally this article was published by the Estrella Publishing Company in “It’s a Grand Life magazine” in their December 2019 issue.
The Davis Phinney Foundation & regional Partners, The Muhammad Ali Center & PMD Alliance, are holding a one-day conference / workshop in the Tucson Convention Center. Tucson Convention Center, 260 Church Ave., Tuscon, AZ 85701.
The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research invites you to a free educational event in Phoenix, Saturday, January 11, 2020. It is designed for Parkinson's patients, their families and care partners. Register online. It will be held at the Arizona Biltmore, 2400 E. Missouri Ave. Phoenix, AZ 85016.
Sun Joo Lee started a Facebook donation site on Nov. 14, 2019. It ended Nov. 28th. The goal was $5,000.00. With your help we exceeded our goal! More than $6,283 was raised for our charity: Tremble Clefs Arizona. We appreciate all who participated - who contributed and who shared the Facebook post. We value all donations - small and large. Thank you so much!
Photographed in 2019, this is our newest video. It culminates in a combined West Side and Original Tremble Clefs performance, singing "The Star Spangled Banner" at Chase Field, Phoenix, on May 15, 2019.
- Mind Maze Productions, Sun City, Arizona -