12 months since diagnosis ... I am a 47yr old male ... This is the year that was

August 10 2011 ... Neurologist diagnoses PD ... straight on to medication (SIFROL) see you in a month ... three visits later, dose increased three times.

I become vague, have difficulty remembering conversations ... makes my wife think she is going mad ... new State - new neurologist!

Reduce Sifrol by 50% introduce Leva-dopa ... this helps balance me out ... pretty soon sad days start ... Neurologist says PD attacking my Serotonin production ... start small dose of anti-depressant ... again balances me

My left arm shakes ... I just tell people to ignore Parky ... he is just trying to get attention. My wife holds my Parky hand when we walk ... helps with the shaking.

On a positive side ...

My GP told me my fitness and flexibility are my retirement pension ... so I took him seriously, retired from work and I started walking - then jogging on a treadmill every day ... now I run 5-6 KLM every day and after watching the Olympic women's marathon I ran 10k straight ... so fay I have lost 10KG and feel healthier and fitter than I have in 10 years.

I find the physical exercise and stretching are extremely beneficial to my symptoms ... and mentally I imagine Parky on the treadmill trying to catch me ... but he seems to tire and give up at the 4.5k's point.

I started writing a book of poems SHAKEN BUT NOT STIRRED about my experience with Parky ... finished it and self published it.

Got me inspired ... wrote two more poetry books TOUCHING THE SILENCE - about teen boys and young men and suicide.

KNOW WHEN TO FOLD THEM - about gambling addiction.

Currently writing FINDING MY VOICE - about my brother in laws battle with throat cancer ... If not for Parky ... I would not have written anything.

My wife and I spent two months in Chiang Mai Thailand ... some volunteering and R&R ... saw the plight of the orphan children ... we have set up the Happy Hands Foundation Australia ... again if not for Parky ... none of this would have happened.

It has been told "We choose our diseases" and I can honestly say that out of all of the critical illnesses I could have been diagnosed with ... I am glad mine is PD.

I think it was MJ Fox who said "I gave up my job to do my life's work" in a way Parky has helped me do the same.

My wife has been my rock and although she wants to save me and take away my pain ... she has had to put up with watching me change both through PD and the effects of meds ... my hat off to all partners who care for a PD spouse.

365 day ... my life has changed pretty dramatically ... is it for the better ... I'd like to think so - but only time will tell. As long as I am positive, fit and healthy ... I can find a way to share my body with Parky ...

Thanks for reading

What an inspiring post. THankyou. We all need to hear positive vibes
9 more poems from SHAKEN BUT NOT STIRRED posted in the second instalment post on creative corner