Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Casualties of War

Parkinson's declared war on me; the threat had been building for years without anyone noticing it, slowly eroding away my defenses and invading my territory. Then one day Parkinson's attacked; it came out of the clear blue sky and crashed into me, my legs buckled and I fell to my knees, causing my life to slip through my fingers and shatter on the floor. The terror of Parkinson's had finally struck.

Once the dust settled and the mourning had begun, I declared war on this terror and mobilised my anger. I sent out my troops in search of my enemy. But Parkinson's was hiding in plain sight. It moved when I moved, it spoke when I spoke. My troops saw this and started to attack but Parkinson's is part of me so attacking it was attacking myself. I damaged myself with all out warfare; I was getting nowhere trying to defeat myself with brute force.

It was difficult laying down my weapons and putting aside my anger but I had to open up negotiations with my disease. I had to face my adversary across the table and understand him; not try to deny him but with a curiosity and compassion for myself find a way to still be me. I found space in my life where I could dry off from the Parkinson's rain and live alongside the changes in my body. Don't deny Parkinson's but equally don't exaggerate its affect.

You can't declare war on a disease, you can only learn to live with it in a sort of truce with yourself; the more you learn, the more neutral territory you gain and the greater the freedom to be you...

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