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What I Like about Parkinson's

Friday October 01, 2021

 

 

Kvetch, kvetch, kvetch, is that all you can do? Why don’t you say something nice about Parkinson’s Disease (PD)  for a change? Well… as they say at Starbucks, that’s a tall order, but alright. I’ll make a list of all the things I like about about PD.  

1. Causes drooling, tremor, slurred speech etc… BUT does not result in hideous green boils erupting painfully on sensitive areas of my body. That’s one for you, Parkinson’s.

2. While we’re on the topic of the rather long list of symptoms, I am glad to see that “Causes spontaneous combustion in most patients” is not a commonly cited problem. Way to go, Parkinson’s.

3. PD depression can be debilitating, but you have to appreciate the fact that such depression is treatable. Thanks for that, Parkinson’s.

4. Misery loves company. The coming PD pandemic will mean I’ll never walk, lurch or stumble alone.   

5. Parkinson’s does not result in unusual odors being emitted from my person… oh wait, it does? Well at least I can’t smell them, as PD has robbed me of my sense of smell. Thoughtful of you, Parkinson’s Disease, always looking out for me.

6. Impaired balance makes crossing a room a walk on the wild side! One false move and you are hurtling towards the floor like a pole-axed steer. Parkinson’s is a passport to a life of inadvertent adventure that can be yours without ever leaving home. Living on the razor’s edge 24/7! “Danger” is my middle name! What’s not to like?

7. PD builds vocabulary. I used to be ignorant of phrases like “emotional incontinence”, “bradykinesia” or “postural instability” now I’m being treated for them!  

8. Parkinson’s gives me something to talk about with my neurologist. There is nothing more uncomfortable than those long stretches of awkward silence in a tiny examining room with a highly-trained specialist. With Parkinson’s, not a problem, there is always plenty to talk about.

9. PD is an excellent motivator for physical fitness. It’s always right there, tireless and faithful, to remind me to work out. Parkinson’s, you’re better than a personal trainer.

10. Can’t taste spoiled food. It’s like a super-power, enabling one to eat foods we would normally shun as “Past their expiration date” or straight-ahead rotten without even noticing. According to the according to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) “Each day in the United States approximately one pound of food per person is wasted per day This equates to 103 million tons (81.4 billion pounds) of food waste generated in America in 2017, or between 30-40 percent of the food supply,” That isn’t on my conscience, thanks to Parkinson’s. (OK, I’m reaching here, but what do you expect from a post called “Things I like about Parkinson’s Disease?)

11. Parkinson’s is currently incurable, this gives me something to hope for every day when I get up in the morning. And what would life be without hope? Those of us with Parkinson’s don’t have to answer that question. 

Peter Dunlap-ShohlPeter Dunlap-Shohl
NWPF Blogger

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