I fell a few days ago for the first time. My gait has been bad for some time, and always feel like I am going to fall; but don’t. I didn’t expect it and I didn’t get hurt either; so I was lucky.
Today, I decided to make some bean salad and potato salad. I had previously boiled the potatoes last evening, so all I had to do was cut, dice and put together. I boiled the eggs today and after cooled; I made the two dishes. I thought they were perfect for this hot, humid day.
I suppose I was standing for about half an hour or so making these two edibles, when suddenly, I felt weak and the Parkinson’s tremors kicked in. Fortunately, I was almost complete with my task. I cleaned up everything and put the dishes in the refrigerator.
My heart suddenly sped up and I knew if I didn’t lay down; I was going to be on the floor again. At this point of this disease, I have a pill I can take to try to calm the tremors down, so I grabbed a bottle of water and swallowing the pill; I laid down with the fan blowing on me and waited for it to take effect.
While waiting, my mind drifted back to my brother. I usually think of him daily, along with my parents; but some days, I think of Alvin so hard, my heart aches terribly and tears well up.
I thought back to how he ate so much sherbet the last week or so of his life. Oh, he didn’t eat a lot at one time; but this is what he always wanted. A few sips, and he was done. Multiple System Atrophy/ Parkinson’s had really done a number on him by then.
He could barely swallow, speak, he couldn’t move at all. It broke my heart watching him go from a 285 pound, smiling, young 59 year old man, to a withering, small, 145 pound shell. This is where today, I sometimes feel like the odd ball.
His illness brought out all the compassion, empathy, sympathy and every other emotion a person can carry while taking care of him. It never left. I still carry it with me. I believe this is somehow a small reason that I changed, and will never return to the Terry I once was.
As I lay on the bed, and I listened to the petty talk on the TV show, as I thought of all the people glued to their cell phones, or computers, or whatever item they can’t be without; I realized, it is cold to me.
There is nothing for me without being able to use these strong emotions; that makes me feel content. There will never be another emotion that will stir me up more than helping, sitting, watching, or caring for a person who needs someone. I have a gift, I believe.
I can feel what they feel. A sense of desperation, a feeling of hopelessness, sorrow, tears, and yes, even sharing a giggle or two. It dawned on me as I was laying there waiting for the medicine to kick in, that this is why I see things so different today than before Alvin got too ill. Between he and God, I learned many lessons. Now if I could just figure out how to use this to my advantage, and yet have my tremors hold me up, I may feel content once again in life.