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Sunday, December 16, 2012

No need to live in the past

The progression of this disease seems slow, until I think about it.  

Seven years ago, I noticed a problem with my handwriting.  Today I rarely write,

Six years ago my leg would twitch occasion.  Now it may take hours for the right combination of pills to kick in, and let me sit still.

Five years ago ,  had an office, that I drove to each day, and was making a decent living.   Today, I take the train to a friend's office, who by the way have been wonderful to me,  I make sure to leave before dark,  and I live "hand to mouth."

Four years ago,  I was able to freely travel around the city by subway.  today I avoid them.

Three years ago, I was still driving.   The last time that I drove, in October, I fell asleep.

Two years ago a three mile walk as easy.  Today I sometimes struggle to walk a mile.

One year ago, I spoke loudly and clearly.  Today, I'm told that I mumble.

The past is gone, no point at dwelling on it.  The only way to go on is to be optimistic about the future.


Sunday, November 25, 2012

An Insular Life

I've avoided writing on this page for some time.   I think that I'm just avoiding reality.   My life have become very insular.  Is that the right word?  Webster defines it as "characteristic of an isolated people."    My life is mostly in Forest Hills.

I no longer drive, why this doesn't depress me, I'm not sure.    I hate the subways, ergo I avoid them whenever possible.

So each day, weather permitting, I take my two mile walk through Forest Hills.  When I'm lucky, I get to take the Long Island Railroad to the Island.

You are my connection to the outside world.

Yet none of this upsets me.

I have always loved to write.   I have always wanted to write humor.   I love Dorothy Parker, James Thurber, Philip Roth the writings of Woody Allen and Groucho Marx.     So I've been writing satire.   About 1 out ot 3 get published, but I save them anyway.  It's my therapy

Now if I can figure out a way to make a buck from it.

Monday, September 24, 2012

About a month and a half ago, I started what was for me a rigorous exercise program.    Parkinson's has afforded me too much free time, so after six years, I decided to put it to good use.  I thoroughly researched exercise bikes.

This brought back fond memories, because at one time, in the seventies, my dad was the number 1 dealer of Schwinn exercise bicycles in New York City.  So therefore, I was not unhappy when my research had me settle upon a Schwinn.

I was skeptical about whether  I would stick to the program.   On the bottom of the cap of a Snapple bottle, I once read that "A Goldfish has an attention span of two seconds."  John Lennon may claim that he is the Walrus, but I am the Goldfish!

I started at 20 minutes a day,  I now, 45 days later, am doing a consistent 90 minutes, in three increments.   It also has made it possible for me to increase my walking to a little bit more than 2 miles a day.

What made me keep up with it?  I realized that I'm a statistics nut,   So by using excel, I created charts that would show my progress.  Being very competitive helped too, because each day I compete against myself.

So what have been the effects?

1)  My Meds seem to last longer;
2) My posture is vastly improved, therefore my neck no longer hurts;
3) I walk at a faster pace;
4) I'm snacking less;
5) I'm much happier and more optimistic.
6) That gut that I've had, that creates a total eclipse of my feet, is slowly going away.

This is a simple activity, that doesn't involve an increase in your meds, nor any invasive surgery, that we can all do, compete with yourself.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Life can change overnight.

Seven years ago,  I had a thriving Law Practice.  I worked hard and lived well.  I saved very little.  I started to notice little signs that there was something amiss with my right side.    I've told that story before, no point at telling it again.

The past seven years have seen the onset and progression of Parkinson's disease, losing my father and recently a dear friend,  moving my office from my office to my home, a precipitous decline in business, and strangely a greater appreciation for my life.

I used to feel sorry for myself.  There was no reason.  I had everything and still do.

Parkinson's showed me the fighter in me.   I refuse to let it win.    I will work until I can no longer work, and then I'll find something else to do.   I drove until I no longer could, and then I walked.   There may be setbacks, but there isn't defeat.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

The Way the New Yorker Drives

It's so much fun being a pedestrian. (To the tune of "My Favorite Things")

Talking on cell phones and ignoring signs written
Keep to the right for this isn’t Great Britain.
Eating your hero and nearly taking some lives
These are the way that the New Yorker Drives.

Talking with two hands on her laps a toy poodle
Don’t try to change her, it’s really quite futile
Clipped the man in the walker, I hope he survives
These are the way that the New Yorker Drives.

Old men with canes making quick daring dashes
It’s their fault that there’s are so many car crashes
Pay no attention, while yelling at wives
These are the way that the New Yorker Drives.

When there’s red lights
And the phone rings
When your coffees cold
You better remember how New Yorkers drive
Your never be, too old

Friday, August 10, 2012

A Day in the Life

The statement was made, that we shouldn’t let our Parkinson’s define us.   I agree in theory, but in reality, it's a difficult concept.

Think about our days, difficulty getting out of bed. Going to the bathroom is tough. In order to effectively brush your teeth you must use an electric toothbrush. If your sinemet hasn't hit, a shower is problematic.

Now after you've partially dried off, get dressed. Underwear is difficult, because you've been having difficult cutting your toenails. Now sit down, cross your legs and try to put your socks on.  It takes a few tries to cross the legs, and if they don’t cramp, five minutes later, the socks are on.

You're ready for breakfast. Mostly bran, because PD has caused constipation.

You're ready to leave from work. Why am I a half an hour late? You no longer drive so you take mass transit. By the time that you get to the bus or train, you're soaking wet.

Chances are there are no seats left on the bus. There is a 20 year old, listening to rap music, wearing a t-shirt that says "Leave me the f*** alone" taking up two seats. Do you dare ask him to move?

If you were lucky enough to get a seat, better start standing one stop early, otherwise you're not getting up in time.

You're at work, your boss calls you in. "Your typing has slowed to a crawl, and you've fallen asleep in meetings. Are you on drugs?"

Rather then tell your boss what the problem is, you struggle all day.

You get home, and your spouse, who is just trying to help, says something, and you snap. You then fall asleep in front of the TV. You are soon awakened by a violent dream

It shouldn't define us. Put some crazy glue on the seat of your chair and see if that chair hanging from your butt defines you.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

It's a Wonderful Life

My friends say that I was hit by the perfect storm.   In 2006 at the age of 49 I was diagnosed with Parkinson's  Disease.  At that time my 80 year old father was in Mount Sinai Hospital with Heart Disease.   I am an Attorney specializing in Real Estate Law.   Due to the cyclical nature of the business and the sub prime mortgages, the business crashed.

In 2008, I moved my office into my home, which was further away from my clientele.       I was in an inevitable depression.  

During this time, I took up a long abandoned hobby, writing.    I loved it.   My friends, family and some strangers, found my stories, Dr. Seuss and song Parodies, and extremely light poetry funny and poignant.   I gave myself the "nom de plume" "Jello Marx," figuring that that would have been the sixth Marx Brother, and started to write a blog called "Memoirs of a Disgruntled Attorney."

Before he passed I made sure to take the bus into Manhattan (I had stopped driving in the city)  and see my dad every Sunday.   We had always had a special relationship, but this solidified it.  This week in 2008 my father passed away.  

My business was and is doing terrible.   I've managed to keep afloat with the help of wonderful family and friends.

The writings and my Sundays with my dad and the realization that I was wasting my time shook me from the depression.  

I've had a great life.   I wanted to give back, so I applied to the "People with Parkinson's Advisory Counsel" of the Parkinson's Disease foundation.   To my great surprise I was accepted.    Here I have met exciting people.   People with Parkinson's who refuse to be marginalized.  These people are not depressed.  They fight every day.   I leave these meeting with an optimism and energy that I've never had before.

I don't know what the future will hold, but no matter what, I won't complain.

Those Sundays helped me deal with his passing.    I eulogized him.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

July 14, 2012. The Hills are Alive

Had an odd dream last nght. There I was in my palatial estate in Austria over looking the Alps. ( I, of course, have never been to Austria, but it sounds so much better that my 2 Bedroom Coop, overlooking Flushing Meadow Park.) When the Von Trapp children came into my room all freightened. I started to sing in a lovely falsetto voice. (But first I put in my falsetto teeth.)

Frozen cold faces and chairs we can’t sit in
Once in fine fettle, now I look like Fred Gwynn
How strange it feels walking the rare time my arm swings
These are a few of what my PD brings

Can’t distinguish my handwriting from doodle
I shimmer and shake, the whole kit and caboodle
My keys are so sly, they just dance as if on strings
These are a few of what my PD brings

Dishes that fall to the floor in loud crashes
Zippers I didn’t close that cause flashes
Falls in the winters and sweats in the springs
These are a few of what my PD brings

When my arm shakes
When my head rolls
When I can't sit still
I simply remember what PD brings
And then take me another pill

Sunday, July 8, 2012

July 8, 2012. In the Beginning

I wonder when this whole thing started.  Because the changes are so subtle, there is really no way of detecting the onset.   I know that it was considerably before I was diagnosed at 49.

My wife, in hindsight, points to instances of "freezing up," a few years prior to diagnoses.  I remember, in 2003, profusely sweating while taking a leisurely stroll on the boardwalk on Miami Beach.

One professional, whom I respect, believes that since there is no history in my family, of Parkinson's Disease, that it may have resulted from a car accident that I had in 1981.

Nobody has convinced me that I am wrong about my belief that there were subtle indications in childhood.

My legs would at times shake.  I was unusually awkward.  People attributed this to the fact that I was very tall.  In all honesty,  I grew out of most, but not all, of the awkwardness.

Why is this pertinent?  Because if they are ever to cure the disease, they may have to do so at the early stages.   But how do you get a young person or their parents to consider Parkinson's is the cause of minor affectations?   I wouldn't do it. And, as far as I know, nobody is considering the possibility that it could start in childhood.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Summertime Blues

I love the outdoors.  As a  kid, the day the weather warmed up I was knocking on doors to get enough people to play softball.   (This was before the internet.)    In the cold weather it was either basketball or street Hockey.   I'm now 55 years old, and although I believe that my old friends would relish a game of softball, we might need some oxygen.

I still hate being cooped up inside,  but today the temperature in New York City will be well into the nineties.  Among the other failed systems, a person with Parkinson's Disease "inner thermometer" often fails.   Some  people are unusually cold, some people are unusually hot.

I sweat profusely. To the point where it is pouring out of me by the time I've walked a block.

Today, if I didn't have PD, or if I didn't get this side effect, I would have gone into Manhattan to see my mother.  Then I would have walked to Central Park, entered by the Metropolitan Museum of Art and gotten lost in the Park.

When I think of my special places, I think of The Mall in  Washington, D.C.,  Portland Head Lighthouse, in Portland Maine, The drive along Southern Vermont from Bennington to Brattleboro,  Rockport, Massachusetts,  Stanley Park, Vancouver, Walden Pond and Central Park, New York.   These are places where I can find peace.

Because I don't drive much anymore and  walking in the hot weather is problematical, the memories of these places are in my mind and my photographs.

Without lecturing being didactic if you have such a place, go to it soon.   It hurts when it's taken away from you.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Parkinson's Unity Walk "Shining Star: for July

I guess that we all grow up.   But whoever thought that it would happen to me.

I was the "goof off" in Junior High School, but because of class sizes in New York City, a natural talent for Math and an almost photographic memory, I almost got away with it.  I say almost, because my folks saw right through me.   They sent me to a private High School, where it was believed that I couldn't get away with "goofing off."  To a limited extent they were right.

In small classed in High School, with Teachers who were worried that the sharpest weapon a student would threaten them with was his or her tongue I was revealed for the underachiever and class clown that you see before you.  

Modest grades, but high standardized test scores, got me into the most mediocre of local colleges.   Where on occasion I would work.

Slightly better grades and again decent test scores got me into a fairly decent Law School.  There I must admit,  I worked hard, but just hard enough to be an average Law Student and pass the bar.

I've always taken care of my clients, but I've never had a taxing practice.

I've never wanted to grow up.

My hobbies went from Baseball and Hockey, which due to the inevitable limitations caused by age, to writing.

I love to write.   So I was honored when the Parkinson's Unity Walk wanted to make my team the "Shining Star" for the month of July.   Asking me to write is a dangerous request.    My writing is different.  It has been described as "conversational,"  "irreverent," "pithy," "inane" and "confusing, "

Judge for yourself.

Monday, June 11, 2012

June 11, 2012. Baby you can drive my car.

Yesterday I drove.

Now that doesn't seem like such a big accomplishment, but it was the first time since last September that I was behind the wheel.   I drove from Norwalk, Connecticut to my home.  About 50 miles.

I think that I am learning how my body reacts.  I've learned to time the meds., so that they are at their peak when I need them to be.   That is what I did yesterday.   Although I was a little tired towards the end of the drive, I did fine.    (Aside to that little old lady that I knocked over,  I'll pay for a new walker.)

This is so strange to list this among my accomplishments.   But, you don't realize how much you miss something until it is taken away from you.

In many ways I am now a better driver than I was before.   We get careless as we take something for granted.     I may annoy the people behind me, but a stick to the speed limit and make full stops at all stop signs.

I'm not returning to driving full time, but it's nice to know that in a pinch, I can and I'm not dangerous.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

June 9, 2012. I've always depended upon the kindness of strangers

Despite my denials and my attempts to not let the disease dictate my life,  I'm afraid that certain concessions have been made.

For one. I have recently noticed that I've become a "homebody."   I don't venture too far from my home.   This was not a conscious decision,  but a behavioral change that evolved from necessity and a little fear.

As much as it troubles me to admit this,  but I am now dependent upon other people.  I must now "Depend upon the kindness of strangers"

I wonder if you're aware how difficult that is for a man to acknowledge.  The male ego is a very big (like all parts) yet very fragile (also like all parts).  This is a part of the illness that the doctors ignore.

I realize that macho allegedly went out with Fernando Lamas.  Well that's is bullshit.   Right or wrong,  Helen Reddy did not destroy thousands of years of conditioning.  It is still extremely difficult for a man to accept the fact that he is dependent.

So I can hear it now, the caretakers out there saying, "We cook,we clean, we drive, we earn, now somehow we've got to boost his ego."  I'm not asking that.  Your lives are tougher than ours.  Just be aware that this is what we may be going through.

Monday, May 28, 2012

May 28, 2012

There has been a recent noticeable change in my body and mind. I've slowed down physically. I still go out every day, but I'm content staying close to home. I've developed fear. I don't believe that there has been any change in my mental capacity, or strangely in my mood.

Walking is a struggle,. Even when I'm able to time my walks around the meds, the heat is overbearing. The sweat pours out of me. The subway cars are air conditioned, but the platforms oven exceed the heat on the street. Stand next to a pungent New Yorker in a black suit on a subway platform in August. Even Dick Cheney would consider this torture.

I also have developed a fear of subway steps. They're often wet and covered with food wrappers. As opposed to the trains themselves that are covered with "singing" rappers.

But, my mood hasn't changed. That's strange, because when I was younger, I could be morose. I'm not anymore, I don't entirely know why, but I'm not going to question that.

It's an awkward feeling to know that in many ways, your best days are behind you, and you failed to appreciate them.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

May 19, 2012

What was the toughest time? Oddly it was the waiting to be diagnosed. I went from Doctor to Doctor, they believed that I had carpal tunnel syndrome, a brain tumor, bone chips, fleas and a yeast infection. Yet I'm convinced that they suspected the truth.

Why didn't they let on? They were more concerned with eliminating possibilities that diagnosing the problem. Had somebody sent me to a Parkinson's specialist earlier, I could have started the long process of healing earlier. Yes healing.

I don't mean physically healing, but mentally healing. Coming to terms with my future. I wonder if those Doctors understand how precious a year is to somebody with an illness. Since we have no way to predict if this will progress quickly or slowly, it would have been great to have started and finished the inevitable depression sooner.

This disease sometimes controls your mind, but often your mind can control this disease. I would have liked to have learned that earlier.

I've noticed a decline in recent months. Not a substantial decline, but one that only my wife and I would see, I don't know what tomorrow will bring, so I choose to enjoy today. It would have been nice, if those Doctors had suspected PD for them to clue me in earlier.

Friday, May 11, 2012

May 11, 2012. Nobody told me

No matter how hard I try to avoid it, Parkinson's is slowly taking over my life.    It's the first thing that people ask me about,  "How are you feeling, Marc?"  "What' shaking?"  Invariably, it's me.  

There's no way for me to disguise it.  I just saw a tape of my interview.  I'm well spoken, but I didn't move.  I look stiff.

Oddly, I'm not depressed.   I've got a perseverance that I was unaware of.  Tell me that I can't walk somewhere, and I'll be there.   The one thing that I do  like about it is fighting it.
But I'm tired now.   It's a all consuming, constant battle.  I know that I'm not in it alone.  Friends, old and new, have supported me, more than I deserve.

I hate the obsession!  I wish that for 10 minutes, that I wouldn't think about it.  That part nobody tells you about.  It will consume your every waking moment.

If you don't have it, you can be empathetic, but you can't grasp the fear of a crack in the sidewalk,  the difficulty cutting your toenails, having to strategize the simple act of putting on your underwear.  Or accepting the inevitable that it takes two lights to cross Queens Boulevard.

I am 6'2", 240 lbs, physically as strong as an Ox, yet at certain times of the day I struggle holding a door open for an elderly lady.

Nobody prepares you for the mental aspect.  

I've met some wonderful people because of Parkinson's.  People who fight this disease with every ounce of energy that they've got. If not for themselves, for the next generation.

I'm sure that there are those who get deeply depressed.  This hasn't been exactly a happy post.   I've chosen to be around those who would rather fight than quit.  I'm not blind,  I know that it could get worse, but remind me, every day of my life, not to quit, to keep on fighting.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Nontraditional Religion.

I am not a person who considers himself religious in the traditional sense of the word.   As a matter of fact, the last time that I was in temple my mind wandered. I thought to myself, “what would happen if Bruce Springsteen, were in fact Jewish, and was the Cantor?
‘ Jews like us, baby we were born to pray.’”                                                                                

I am so untraditional that I call myself a “Jew for Jeter.”

Knowing this, would you call me a hypocrite, if I say that I feel blessed?

I don’t believe that I’m blessed by God, but if you want to feel that way, I’m not going to argue.

I’ve had a pretty easy, uncomplicated life.  Until recently my toughest decision may have been choosing who not to root for in the 1986 World Series.  I ended up hoping that both teams would somehow be disqualified.    Now, I have real issues to face.

I face a world of uncertainty.    Will this disease continue to progress at a snail’s pace, awarding me the opportunity to make my life productive?

It’s not that I’ve been unproductive, but admittedly, I’ve looked at life from the cheap seats.   Yeah, I’ve been the uninvolved complainer, but besides voting, I’ve never done anything.  When I heard that Hostess was owned by ITT baking, which had something to do with the bombs in Viet Nam, it was too much for me to give up cup cakes.

SO why am I suddenly blessed?  Why have I been given a second chance.   I HAVE SEEN THE LIGHT!!!   Can I get a Hallelujah?  Alright enough of that crap.

Everybody that I know has been good to me, my family, my friends etc... They don’t treat me as handicapped, they don’t marginalize me, they treat me just as they always have.  I appreciate that.  I have no opportunity to feel sorry for myself.   That would be a waste of time.

I’ve also gotten involved with a group of Parkinson’s advocates.   These people are energized, these people are intelligent, these people are selfless.   Not one of them asks for pity.   Not one of them does less then they did before being diagnosed.  I respect these people.  They’ve taught me so much.

I’m 55 years old.   For some strange reason that is called middle aged.    I’ll accept that lie, because now I have 55 years to pay forward.   They might not find a cure for this insidious disease during my lifetime, but my role is to exert any effort that I can, to help find a cure for future generations.    I do it with pleasure.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Ladies and Gentlemen of the Jury

There are times that I wonder where this shaky journey that I'm on will go.

There are certain facts:  1) You don't die from Parkinson's Disease, 2) On the other hand, you can die from one of the symptoms; 3) There is currently no cure; 4) Everybody dies of something.

"Ladies and Gentlemen of the Jury, those are the facts.   They are not in dispute.   Now what of the defendant, Marc Sherman, aka Groucho Marc, aka Jello Marx, aka Marc I Am,  aka Oscar Marcinson, has he led an exemplary life?"

"He freely admits to at times in his life having been selfish, sloppy, sarcastic and lazy.  As a matter of fact that is written on his CURRICULUM VITAE (Latin for aren't I a pompous ass?  It would have been just as easy to say Resume). Will this life altering disease change him?"

"So at 55 years old, much closer to the end than the beginning, has the defendant exhibited any remorse?  Constantly.  But what that that mean, words and thought are meaningless with accompanying deeds."

"So, Mr Foreman of the Jury, have you reached a verdict?"

"Yes your honor we have, the defendant has exhibited no propensity to change  so we sentence him to a life sentence with himself."

There is nothing worse than being caught up.

Why is it that at the time of life that you can physically and mentally do practically anything, you're not smart enough to know how? Later in life, when you finally figure it out it's too late. 

I've come to one conclusion. If there is a God, he or she is a practical joker. Who else would create a platypus? 

But if this is a practical joke. I get it. Now can we move on? 

Parkinson's disease is exhausting. I dread sitting down. because of the struggle getting back up. I know what to do. but my body fights me.

The Meds just kicked in. For the next three to four hours, I'm as able as you and you. Maybe more than you. Then, all of a sudden it stops.

The last two weeks have been busy. I'm exhausted, but in a good way. The worst feeling in the world is being caught up. You worry where the next check will come from.

I hope that I never know that feeling again.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

I've got good news and bad news.

The one thing that you’re not warned about is the utter exhaustion that simple, everyday tasks cause if you have Parkinson’s disease.      This was probably the busiest week that I’ve had in 4 years.   That’s the good news.   This was probably the busiest week that I’ve had in 4 years.  That’s the bad news.

Monday, I was in Brooklyn by 8:00 AM, and in Syosset, Long Island by 11:30 AM
Tuesday, I was in Centereach, Long Island in the afternoon.   Because I have to take the train, and there are no trains to Centereach, I left in the morning.
Wednesday, I was in Merrick, Long Island all day.
Thursday, I started in Jamaica, Queens at the Surrogate’s court, and then went to Syosset, where I was stood up for on an appointment.
Friday, I was in Brooklyn again at the Surrogate’s Court.

All of these appointments, except Monday morning, I took the subways or railroad.   Monday morning, my wife drove me.

This would have been a hectic week prior to PD, but it wouldn’t have been unusual.

I’m exhausted and exhilarated.

Don’t let anybody tell me that I can’t do something.     The human spirit can overcome a myriad of obstacles.   So I’m tired.  I’ve got the weekend.

The good news is this coming week is also busy.

Friday, April 6, 2012

A dose of Reality

It's been a somewhat frustrating time.   I hate writing about that, but if I'm going to write about Parkinson's you should know that I don't always feel optimistic and I am often frustrated.

I take three different medications for Parkinson's.   The one that I feel is the most effective (and truly I don't know this for a fact)  I take 4 time a  day.  I take it at 6:00 AM, 11:00 AM. 4PM and 10PM.   I can feel the moment that it kicks in.   I can sometime feel the moment that it wears off.

The hour before I take each dose is the most annoying.  I can't keep my foot flat on the ground.   Sitting is terribly uncomfortable.  Standing isn't always practical.

At this moment my fingers are working well.  I'm typing, albeit not the way I was taught, but at an acceptable pace.     At 10:30 AM, if I'm still typing, I will be hitting the wrong letters and typing at a Tortoise pace.

I'm pushing myself to walk.   Averaging 2 miles a day.  Yesterday I did 3 miles.  Sometimes it is difficult.  I try to time the walks so they coincide with the apex of the medication's effectiveness.

As I have previously stated, I don't have a typical Parkinsonian tremor.  My tremor is in my legs.  Mostly my right leg.  When a man, almost 6 foot 3 inches and 240 pounds shakes, so does everybody and everything around him.    I was particularly conscious of this while sitting in classes on Wednesday.     Stopping the tremor for a short period of time is possible, but it is difficult.    

Perhaps the most difficult thing is rising from a chair.    When the pills are working, I have no problem, when they are not, I think that it would be easier to light a match on a bar of soap.  (Stan Laurel said that this was impossible, in response to Oliver Hardy's statement, "Nothing is impossible, Stanley.")

My business has improved.   Partially because of the economy.  Partially because I've got this thing in me that says I should never give in.

People have asked if I'm thinking about going on disability.  Not a chance.    I may not love what I do, but it is mine, and for me, quitting is not an option.

So it leaves me just where it always has.  I'll continue to believe that in the realm of things, that I have it pretty good, laugh about what i'm going through and remain happy.  

Some people find this inappropriate behavior.  It's the only way that I know how to cope.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Letter to Governor Kasich

In response to Governor Kasich's cruel imitation of a patient with Parkinson's disease, I drafted and forwarded the following letter. Dear Governor Kasich: Let me introduce myself, I am an Attorney in New York City, who for the past 6 years has been suffering with Parkinson's Disease. Your recent speech, and your ignorant imitation of a Parkinson's patient, is indicative of the problems with politics today. I am not an Ohio resident, but if I were I wouldn't feel that you were representative of the best interests of all of your constituents. My disease has not progressed as far as the patient that you mocked. However, I do know what it is like not to be able to sit still for more than a few seconds at a time. I do know what it is like not to enjoy the simple pleasure of a short walk. I do know what it is like not to be able to hold a child, for fear that you may drop that child. I certainly hope that you never suffer the indignities that you put this patient through with your cruel and ignorant imitation. I hope that you will learn to think before you speak in the future. Very truly yours, Marc C. Sherman

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

"Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt"

I haven't written on this page for awhile, because frankly, I was boring myself. So I can just imagine how you feel. Therefore, I've decided to give it a rest for awhile. I'm not quitting, if some thought strikes me, I'll write about it. But to write the same thing every day, has gotten monotonous. You know that I am grateful for my life, It doesn't have to be repeated. I don't want to minimize the suffering that many with this disease have. It can get far worse than it has with me. I've been lucky. Hopefully I'll continue to be lucky. Everybody has problems, I will always discuss them, but if I ever complain about them, you have license to strike me. So, I'm not closing this door, but until an original thought strikes me, I'm taking a break.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

January 10, 2012. I was so much Older then, I'm Younger than that now.

The aging process is difficult on the psyche. Combine that with a neurological disease which plays havoc on your mind and body and the results are pretty.

I used to be able to multiply double digit numbers, correctly, in my head, faster than someone could input them into a calculator. I have come to realize that I no matter how I try, I can no longer do math in my head. "So What," you say. "We all have calculators."

Take the one thing that you can do that nobody else can do. Now take it away. I don't know if this is a function of age or of Parkinson's disease.

I'm also misplacing things. I was always absent minded, but i never lost anything. Yesterday, I turned my office upside down looking for a file. My notes in the computer show that I wrote a letter on December 21, 2011, so I had the file then. I've never done this before.

I once had a photographic memory. Now it seems that the shutter is stuck.