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Amanda Keller has revealed some heartbreaking personal news she and her husband have been sitting on for years, waiting for the best moment to deliver the news.

On the latest episode of her podcast Double A Chattery with friend and co-host, forensic psychologist Anita McGregor, she revealed that her husband Harley Oliver has been battling Parkinson’s disease for six years.

The TV personality revealed on the podcast: “I first noticed Harley’s footfall around the house changing, like he was dragging his leg, and his hands started to shake, and he said he’d just been whacked in the thumbs as a wicket keeper playing cricket, but I felt something was going on.”

Listen to the audio above

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Amanda Keller with husband Harley Oliver

“I know Harley so well, and how protective he is of his inner core, he was absolutely scared and in denial, and who would blame him.”

Shortly afterwards, they were delivered the devastating blow confirming their fears – Oliver was officially diagnosed with Parkinson’s.

The brain disorder occurs when the nerve cells in the basal ganglia, the area of the brain that controls movement, become impaired or die, according to the National Institute on Ageing.

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These neurons would usually produce dopamine, but when they die or become impaired, they produce less which results in the movement problems associated with the disease. It is not known what causes the cells to die.

Early stage symptoms include, shaking, stiffness, difficulty with balance, faces showing little to no expression, arms not swinging as you walk, speech becoming soft and slurred, and more. As the disease progresses, patients will have more trouble walking and talking. Though there is no cure, there are medications which can delay the progression of it.

“When he came home [from the doctor], we both just sat there completely numb,” Keller recalled.

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It only hit her two days later, when she had to attend her son’s Year 11 open day.

“I fought tears all day just looking at these people at the beginning of their journey, and I was so envious.

“I had such a flashback to when that was me. And I thought, ‘Their journey is just starting.’ And something closed off for me.”

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Amanda Keller with husband Harley Oliver

She admits that her “knee-jerk reaction” was to be mad at her husband for not being able to “fight it”.

“All the things that it [Parkinson’s] does [to you], I thought, ‘why isn’t he fighting it?’ And of course I’ve come to see he can’t control this, and neither can I, and that’s been a big lesson for me. So I’ve become kinder, and sadder,” she said.

Se says she’s “trying not to feel like I have to control it. Because it’ll kill me. And he doesn’t want that.”

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Amanda Keller arrives at the 61st Annual TV WEEK Logie Awards at The Star Gold Coast on June 30, 2019 on the Gold Coast, Australia.

Oliver came on to the show later on to speak about his personal experience, mentioning that it was easier to go public with his diagnosis once his mother had died.

”She wouldn’t have dealt very well with the idea I had Parkinson’s, she knows, living in a retirement village, what that means. I wanted to keep it away from her.

“That that pressure of trying to pretend I was really well, was gone,” he recalled of her death. “It was better for her, not having to worry about me as much as herself.”

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Nearing the end of the podcast, the pair shared a heartwarming exchange.

“I love you Harley,” Keller told her husband of 34 years. Oliver emotionally replied, “I love you too. You’re terrific with all of this.”

“Somebody early on said the one thing that’ll keep you out of a rest home is the relationship you have with your partner, and it’s so true,” he added,
“I’m very grateful that we have that strength.”

Keller and Oliver, have been married since 1989 and have two sons together, Liam, 21, and Jack, 19.

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Title: Amanda Keller reveals husband Harley Oliver’s six-year battle with Parkinson’s disease
Sourced From: celebrity.nine.com.au/latest/amanda-keller-husband-harley-oliver-parkinson-disease-diagnosis-battle/ae85e611-4dce-4489-86da-0edf0e75776d
Published Date: Thu, 05 Oct 2023 04:10:00 GMT

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