Posted 9/27/2010 7:12 PM (GMT -7)
"My Parkinson's, Our life"!
Hello, I'm Mark, I'm 37, i have suffered with Parkinson's for nearly 7 years now. I worked for vodafone for about 10 years,
the last 4 of which i found it more and more difficult, my legs began to ache, i was constantly shaking, always tired,
and my walking was getting worse and worse.
I have always been a drinker, and occasional Cocaine user. People would look at me and say "heavy night mark?"
and i would always say yes even if i'd had a quiet one. Looking back now i think i was embarrassed and scared. It took 6 years after my
first twitchy finger ( my right hand pinky)to be diagnosed. I had cat scans, MRI scans, all manner of drug tests.
The fear of not knowing maybe worse then the knowing itself.
I remember the last time i went to see my doctor before i was diagnosed, I had just got back my last set of bloods.
She called me to her office, i walked slowly (the only way i can now) my body was shaking my feet shuffling, hoping this time she would
have news of some condition.
As i shuffled into her office i felt my shakes getting worse, more rapid, stronger more intense.
I sat,we talked about how grey a day it was then i ask "ANYTHING???
NO MARK!!" she answered.
I said,"please tell me am i going insane"? I cant walk, i constantly shake and I'm always tired "HELP ME!!"
"I don't know what else to do mark"....As i snapped out of my moment of madness i heard myself say,"specialist" i wanna see one.
2 months later i shuffled into the neurology department of the RUH in Bath
with my fiancee (now my strong beautiful and very patient wife)."Mr Brownlow ,that's us love".We walked slowly Into the Dr's office
there sat a a caring looking gent, Dr lyons he said "hello ,ok lets see" (I'm not sure if I'm imagining this but I'm sure it was another grey day). "Walk down here for me please Mark" , i shuffled like usual."OK Mark I'm 99% sure you have Parkinson's"."Sorry i said,,
Parkinson's disease! No that's for old people!" "Unfortunately not Mark", said Dr Lyons. "I just need to do 1 more test".
"OK Mark you have lost over 80% of your dopamine producing cells, you have Parkinson's".
For the last year or so i have been in a dark place,telling myself "its not happening" i have drank myself silly. I have been married for 4 months
my wife is an amazing women whom i love dearly, i have two children whom i love with every inch of me, i have the worlds strongest mum who means the world to me, and a loving and caring brother and dad who look out for me.I also have some amazing friends who have really stuck by me !!! Last month my wife kicked me out of home
(for drinking to much) my family had had enough, i nearly lost everyone i love, i was down as low as i could go..
For the last month i have started pulling myself back up again, i am trying to accept my illness, i have cut my drinking by 80%
and I'm starting to enjoy my life and family again.
If you are reading this I'm sure u have, or someone you love dearly has been touched by this irritating and frankly rude disease,
so you know the feeling when u hear the words "PARKINSON'S DISEASE"!!
I write this letter to help me accept my Parkinson's, but in doing so i hope to help others see
"YOU CAN FIGHT BACK"