Tonight I couldn’t sleep – yes, once again, the result of Parkinson’s Disease or the drugs or both – I don’t know. So, as I sat in the kitchen sipping chicken soup and reading the Parade Magazine my reality was shaken. I read an article in the magazine written by author, Jacqueline Mitchard. She described the unfortunate situation where she and her husband were bilked out of their life savings by a dishonest investment manager. She also told of their decision to move forward in adopting two little girls from Ethiopia, despite the hardship they were facing financially. She said, “We’d lost our money, but we wouldn’t lose our souls.”
I was moved deeply by their story and the decision to provide a home and family for those two young ladies. But the part that moved me the most was toward the end of the article. These sentences struck a chord in my heart:
“Fifteen years ago – widowed, broke and terrified – I thought I paid my dues. Sometimes I think I’ll crack from anger and overwork and regret. But most lives run in cycles. If life careens downhill after a setback, that might owe as much to attitude as fate.”
Lately I’ve been angry, bitter and not very nice over the frustration of having Parkinson’s Disease. The words Jackie wrote could easily have come out of my mouth – except for the last sentence. Those words have shaken me to my core. The reminder that everyone has setbacks, undesirable events, tragedies, hurts, deception, even being cheated financially was the swift kick I’ve needed lately. The last sentence reminding me that it’s my attitude that determines the aura I walk around in – that’s what I needed to hear.
Last night my wise twenty-eight year old son reminded me that there are lots of people around me who are suffering in some sort or another. He reminded me that PD isn’t fun, it wasn’t “deserved” and that despite my anger, the “evil” disease is there, it’s not going away, I won’t be healed. But he also reminded me that it’s my choice in how I live with PD that determines the peace I have.
So, tonight I owe thanks to Josh and Jackie for setting me straight. The reflection in the mirror can only be peaceful when I adjust the attitude. Life will continue to careen downhill with Parkinson’s Disease, I can’t change that. But my attitude determines how I face this adversity. I may need more reminders along the way. I’m not perfect. But I now realize that if I want peace in this circumstance I have to adjust the attitude.
Posted in Anger, Attitude, Lack of sleep, Parkinson's Disease, Peace, Sleep, Try to remember..... Tagged: Anger, Attitude, Jackie Mitchard, Parkinson's Disease, sleep deprivation