Many people will ask me what Parkinson’s disease (PD) feels like. Seeing as there are many variation of symptoms, it is hard to describe. Not to mention that each person will experience Parkinson’s in a different way. We are kind of like snowflakes; there are no two Parkies that are alike. Or if you are a fashionable and chic Parkie, you could see it as we all have our own pair of designer jeans that we wear. Although they may look similar, we each wear our jeans differently.
When you think of Parkinson’s disease, do you think of an old man with a tremor? Can you imagine a 30-something girl, such as myself, having trouble multi-tasking? The overgeneralization that Parkinson’s only impacts elderly people’s movements is common today. PD is not our Grandfather’s disease anymore. Finally awareness is being raised on the many faces of Parkinson’s. That is why I am going to describe non-motor symptoms that I struggle with on a daily basis.
“Too Much” is the only way I can describe the feeling that I get when my medication is “off” and there is too much noise around me. This can be as simple as the television and dish washer going at the same time, or my dog crawling on my lap when someone is trying to have a conversation with me. Sometimes, the only thing that I can think of is finding a quiet place, by myself and try to regain my thoughts.
If there are too many people around me, I almost feel like I cannot breath and that everyone is looking at me. I am in a state of panic, like just getting out of the room or into my car is the only way to stop this sensation. You begin to second guess everything that you say, or any facial expression that you make. I can see why they say people with Parkinson’s become recluse and antisocial!
You must understand that this is just a slice of what my Parkinson’s feels like and this can change every hour. When people say “You don’t look like you have Parkinson’s disease”, I want to hug them and then at the same time push them in front of a car. Hey, don’t judge me! Blogging is about being honest. The fact that my symptoms are always changing, can be a blessing and a curse. It is nice that when my medications and body are balanced; I can appear as if I am just as normal as the next attractive, smart, funny, witty (sorry, I lost my train of thought) girl. But when I am off, I am not only trying to hide my symptoms, but I am failing miserably. Hope this gave you a small glimpse into a day in the life of a Parkie.