Laura's page, I am a Young Onset Warrior!
I am a Young Onset Parkinson's Warrior diagnosed at 54 after many years of doctors and tests, physical therapy and procedures, including 10 days in patient in Michigan. I started having tremors as a teenager, sleep disorder 20 years ago, severe neck pain and frozen shoulder in 2018 a well as cognitive issues in 2019. I have had low blood pressure for many years but the dizziness along with lightheadedness was getting worse resulting in diagnosis of Postural Orthostatic Hypostension in 2018. Began having vertigo with balance issues in 2017. All of these are symptoms of Parkinson's Disease but my neurologist said none of the doctors were putting it all together because I was too young. Awareness for this disease, its symptoms and affects are so very important. If you can, help my friends and family in supporting me, fighting for me, and believing in me! Thank you so much in advance.
I may have Parkinson's but Parkinson's does not have me!
Parkinson's is a neurodegenerative disease resulting from loss of nerve cells in your brain which have stopped working or died.
Due to the loss of muscle control symptoms include rigidity of limbs, shuffling of feet, stiffness, pain, frozen shoulderr. Sometimes we experience hoarseness of our voice as if having a cold. I will eventually lose my ability to speak clearly with my voice becoming softer over time and the words more difficult to understand. Since muscle reactions are slowed there are instances of "freezing" and my legs will not move. Stiffness and pain in my hands cause me difficulty with buttons, opening items, writing, grasping.
By the time you start showing symptoms you are already well into PD as the brain cells have already begun to die. I couldn't have done anything to prevent it. Knowing earlier would not have changed my treatment or helped me fight it off. There is no way to turn back time, only to live the best life I can.
There is no cure for Parkinson's! PD never goes into remission. PD is a progressive disease in which symptoms continue to worsen over time as the brain cells continue to stop working or die. It is not known what causes Parkinson's so there is no way to prevent it. There is no testing to try and catch it early. Treatment helps with the tremors but as soon as the meds wear off, the tremors increase again. The PD med starts wearing off faster as time goes on and then the meds increase but there is a drawback with this as the meds themselves begin increasing issues with muscle control.
Parkinson's does not define me. I will fight against it as hard as I can. I am a WARRIOR. I am UNBREAKABLE. I am INVINCIBLE. I am STRONG. Am I scared? Of course I am! I don't know what my future holds, but then again none of us do. I just know I want to enjoy as many wonderful moments as I can. I want to spend time with friends and family making new memories.
I want to live, not just survive. I may encounter many defeats but will not be defeated. I will bring my own sunshine wherever I go and leave footprints of love and kindness.
More testing and research is desperately needed so hopefully future generations will know more, know how to prevent and how to treat. I have participated in several research studies and will continue to do so in order to help with the advancement of research and possibly a cure. Even those these research studies will not help me, I hope they will hope those in the future who are affected by this crummy disease!
There needs to be more awareness of PD, especially Young Onset. PD does not just affect the older generation, about 5% of Parkinson's cases are people under 60 years old who are considered Young Onset.
I invite all of you to join our team to help in the awareness of PD. If you are able to, I ask for you to donate towards our team. Many lives depend on it.
Thank you so much in advance,
Laura and Steve
Mama, Carol Sims, and Daddy, Welford Sims, And all my friends and family supporting me through the ups and downs physically, emotionally and mentally
"Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take but by the number of moments that take your breath away."