Recently I began working with a gentleman names Osric. He goes by Kirk but he lets me call him Osric- because it is the coolest name ever…
He is a tall man with dark skin, peppered black hair, broad shoulders and blue eyes. He has a soft voice-thanks to Parkinson’s, a big smile- despite Parkinson’s and a gentle spirit.

His first session was all about learning the basics of boxing training. He did most of his exercises seated because his legs sometimes get stuck to the floor and really tired. As i was teaching him technique and form he said something that immediately burned a vision of him in my mind. He sighed as his hands dropped heavily into his lap. “I just can’t believe how weak I am. I used to be so strong.”

This man sitting before me reminded me exactly of the Rock Biter from the movie The Never Ending Story. His strong shoulders bearing the weight of “The nothing” an ominous cloud that is swallowing up everything in Fantasia. No one knows how to stop the nothing. There is no cure. It is similar to Parkinson’s Disease in that way.

In the movie it is a simple fix that requires a human boy to overcome his father’s voice telling him to get his head out of the clouds, to keep his feet on the ground. He finally yells into the storm and saves Fantasia. At Rock Steady, the ominous opponent is Parkinson’s, the fix is to fight the disease at every point. To believe that no matter what place you are in- you still have a voice to shout, strength to punch, march, stand, and move, and fight to keep a quality of life that includes happiness, confidence, and friends. Lots of them. Like the Rock Biter- Osric will meet many good friends along the way- a racing snail, a crazy bat, and many more.