I don’t suppose my story is much different to most people here, but at the risk of boring everyone, here goes…
I was diagnosed with PD in Sept '19 at the age of 61, after having been referred to a neurologist by my GP when I was suffering with very stiff leg muscles. At the time, I could barely walk 200 yards before my legs would begin to painfully seize up. Following the diagnosis, I was prescribed Sinamet+, which has done a lot to ease my symptoms. I can now manage to walk a mile or so at a good pace.
After the diagnosis and taking into account the tests the neurologist carried out, I now realise that other symptoms I was experiencing were likely due to PD. These included some difficulty in hand-writing and slight stiffness in arm muscles, though these weren’t as bad as I eventually got in the legs. Thinking about them, I believe my PD had been present for at least 2 years prior to diagnosis.
I had tended to put these symptoms down to the stress I was suffering at the time, due to caring for elderly parents, especially my father, who had been bed-ridden and suffering from dementia for some years, although he has now passed away, and carrying on with a full-time job as well. I suppose I should have seen a doctor earlier, but PD is not something you really think could affect you - I mean, isn’t it one of those conditions some other poor bugger gets, not me?
So over the last few years with all the above going on, I got very little exercise, so the mile-walks I mentioned above are a mini-triumph for me now. I’m trying to build them up as time goes on and I get a little fitter.
Luckily, the firm I work for have been very supportive, both in respect of when I’ve needed time off to support my parents, and after my diagnosis. I have discussed with them the possibilities of going part-time or taking early retirement. I am still pondering these options, obviously finances being a significant factor, but the same time I’d like to be able to have more time to myself to enjoy life - like being able to get out fishing more often or build that model railway I’ve always wanted to - before things deteriorate too much. A difficult choice ahead I think, and I can’t really get my head around it at the moment.
Oh well, that’s enough from me for now. Take care everyone.