A Decade of Living with Parkinson’s Disease : By Maria De Leon

IMG_3284He  {God} Frames our lives in pictures

Last few days, I have been thinking about all the blessings in my life; especially since I just celebrated another birthday. I have marbled at the beauty that has taken place in my life over the last decade. As we visited Victoria, B.C. and witnesses one of the most beautiful gardens (Buchart Gardens) I have ever seen while (more importantly) being able to enjoy the fragrant aroma of the myriad of flowers, I knew God’s hands were at work in my life. I then was reminded of the book made into a movie ‘THE SHACK.”Image result for limestone quarry inn victoria images

Sometimes, we feel in life while struggling with this illness { and any chronic disease for that matter} that there is so much chaos, uncertainty, doubt and pain that we feel powerless. We may even feel defeated, angry, and unwilling or perhaps unable to go on fighting/living.  we feel that our days of being valued and worth something is behind us. just as perhaps the  like the quarry of lime stone in B.C. once felt proud of its rich minerals coveted by many. But, then it came a time when Parkinson’s came into our lives and we felt like  that quarry seeing its minerals simply dissipate leaving a barren waste of a landscape. Where I once thought I was defeated and had reached my potential, I have learned I was just beginning; just like all of you who suffer with an illness. As I contemplated the pictures of a barren land then beheld the transformation before  me I simply marbled at its beauty. So too I have moved from weakness to strength from spiritual infancy to spiritual maturity.  Realizing that all that goes around us looks like a BIG mess without any order and wonder why bad things have to happen to good people? Yet,  in reality is the combination of seemingly bad things intermingled with good things that allow for growth and blessings. Sometimes, we develop narrow vision focusing on one tree or flower, in our case ourselves or our own problems that all we see is barely a glimpse of a frame of an entire picture. But, when you take a step back the entire scene is revealed.  You will then see the beauty of the garden (your life)  in its entirety.  If you allow it, it might even take your breath away as it has me.

Like the garden I visited, I went from a productive highly regarded person to a barren soil with (I felt) nothing to offer. Yet, all I needed was the right soil to become productive once more. The rich soil has come about from meeting so many wonderful people around the world along the way; while fighting to make lives better by getting involved with the women’s initiative, being part of PPAC and PF (formerly PDF), and the MJFox foundation . Learning to live in the present enjoying each moment as it comes and changing the focus of my lenses outwardly rather than inwardly to me and my problems has allowed me to enjoy the small victories and grow from the defeats. Moreover, my once barren land has once again become rich, in a different way than before, due to the contribution of more skilled and talented people than I to create a beautiful legacy which hopefully can be reaped a 100 years from now when PD will be yet another disease that was eradicated like polio and smallpox.Image result for limestone quarry inn victoria imagesImage result for limestone quarry inn victoria images

These areas were once sunken and lifeless…the two pine tress you see on the right are called the “tree of life” and marked the entrance to the quarry.

These gardens began with a single person not being content with the state of  their surroundings. Although, Mrs. J Butchart was not about to abandon her home and place she loved she did not enjoy the view and chose to do something about it. It takes only one person with one positive attitude followed by a positive action to begin a whole chain reaction that can bring about change for everyone to enjoy. I believe all of us have seeds of greatness inside of us, we just have to stop ( takes initiative and determination) and make a conscious decision to  disallow our window from being framed with negative thoughts and shift our focus to positive ones.  One day, you and I will be allowed to see the completed scene in all its glory so don’t despair. Take one step at a time- this garden has taken a 100 years to reach is current beauty-pray, rest if you must, but never give up. so just because we have PD we don’t have to make him welcome and let it take over our lives – we still have control of our attitudes and where we choose to focus our sights on.

 

 

copy right@2017

All rights reserved- Maria De Leon MD

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