Dancing in the Rain: Lessons Learned on my Personal Journey with PD (more at www.PDPlan4Life.com) Copyright 2013-16 Sheryl Jedlinski
Achieving new “personal bests” in speed and distance for the 2014 APDA Midwest Chapter Walk-a-Thon sparked a flame that rekindled my inner spirit. This annual event is one of my own measures for evaluating how well I am doing year over year in my battle against Parkinson’s disease. In my mind, completing the 1.5-mile course – regardless of how long it takes or how many times I stop to rest – proves I am holding my own 15 years into my journey with this progressive illness. This tradition is not only reassuring for me, but also for others, who need to see that they, too, can have many good years ahead of them if they work at it.
I attribute much of my latest success to my new aluminum walking sticks that now go everywhere I go, improving my stability and posture, encouraging longer strides, and decreasing my pain. For old time sake, I still whined a few times and tried to convince my “pit crew” that I needed to take the shorter path back, but my son, Steve, would hear none of this. In fact, he goaded me on.
Each of us owes a debt of gratitude to family and friends, without whose support and encouragement we would not enjoy the quality of life we do. My team for the 2014 Walk was comprised of my husband Tony, son Steve, and daughter-in-law Megan. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart… I could not do what I do without you.