What do you want to say to this unwelcome disease...
“Dear PD I’ll admit you may have conquered me in the beginning, made me fear the future and lose faith in my capabilities, but I soon learned to put you in your place. My dance with denial, fear and secrecy eventually came to an end. And now that I know you are only a part of my life, you no longer define me.
Dear PD, you may make my hands shake and tremor, but these same hands will care for my family and hold my children close. These same shaky, loving hands will continue to guide them as they navigate this sometimes difficult journey called life. They will hold theirs tight as they face their own challenges and will raise their arms high as they celebrate their victories.
Dear PD because of you my body may not work the same as everyone else, but I will never again feel broken or less of a person. I will not feel like less of a daughter, wife, mother or friend. I will not give you or any other life circumstance that power over me again - I am the way I was meant to be and in my “less than perfect” body, lies a woman of confidence. I know my worth.
Dear PD, I won’t let you stop me from living the life I know I am capable of living. You may have robbed me of a career I love but in fact it is because of you that I found my life’s true calling. My voice may be a little softer now that you are here but I will continue to speak with conviction and advocate on behalf of those in my Parkinson’s family who have yet to find their own dialogue. I will admit that at times I wish you had never entered my life but I would not be the person I am today or be living a life of empowerment, without you.
Dear PD I watch you try and destroy the lives of those in my Parkinson’s community but I see them rise above you time and time again. Like me, they will not succumb to the cruel, relentless war that you wage on their bodies. As you continue to try and weaken us, we will come together, support each other and through our collective proactivity, better treatments and that elusive cure will be found. (Of that I’m sure.)
Dear PD you may think that you have taken a lot from my life but unbeknownst to you, you have given me much more. It is because of you that I am able to face each day with gratitude for the simple joys with family and friends. It is because of you that I take nothing for granted. You are much more of a blessing than the curse you initially appeared to be.
Dear PD you have may feel as though you have made me weak but my friend you have only strengthened my resolve. You may think you’ve slowed me down and perhaps in the physical sense you have at times but reality is, I am unstoppable.
Dear PD, nice try but I’m still here.”