Writing Is Hard — but It’s My Lifeline

Sherri Woodbridge avatar

by Sherri Woodbridge |

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The other day, I filled out a form requesting my name and email address. It also asked me to check a little box. That was it. So I filled out my information and left the little box unchecked.

It took me about 37 seconds to fill out the form and ignore that little box. Anyone reading the form would barely be able to make out what I wrote, assuming they could make it out at all. 

Life slows down with Parkinson’s

I used to type around 40 words per minute. But my speed steadily decreased once I started having tremors. Who knows what my speed is now — probably 10 wpm, or maybe even less. It frustrates me because writing is one of my greatest joys in life. When I am not writing, I am thinking about what I will write next or what I am currently working on.

I enjoy writing articles, children’s stories, devotionals, inspirational stories, and so much more. But the going can be so frustratingly slow. My writing can even be full of errors and mistakes. I often have to go back and fix and fix and fix. 

I keep writing because I love to, and because, for some reason, I believe I am supposed to. Perhaps it’s because writing is therapy when I am weary over things in this world. Perhaps it’s because writing can (hopefully) encourage others. Perhaps it’s some other reason that I will never identify.

Struggling for control

I don’t struggle with tremors as much as I used to, thanks to my deep brain stimulation surgery, but I struggle to make my fingers work the way I want. They seem to have a mind of their own. Sometimes I want to throw the computer out the window, but writing by hand isn’t an option. No one would be able to read it by the end of the very first word. 

But I keep on. I have to keep on. I don’t have a choice.

Writing is a lifeline. It is a joy. I believe writing is a gift my God gave to me. He hasn’t asked for it back, so I will keep using it for as long as I am able.

***

Note: Parkinson’s News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Parkinson’s News Today or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to Parkinson’s disease.

Comments

Tom avatar

Tom

Does Parkinson's also affect the mental/creative side of your writing?

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Sherri Woodbridge avatar

Sherri Woodbridge

Tom - from my own experience, i think so, but i am determined to fight the little booger!

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Brenda Godlove avatar

Brenda Godlove

Your writing is my encouragement and inspiration. I look forward to the little road sign and van popping up telling me that you've written another article. I thank God for your perseverance...your articles make a difference to me.

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Sherri Woodbridge avatar

Sherri Woodbridge

Brenda - many heartfelt thanks for your encouraging comment!

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Marianne Gooding avatar

Marianne Gooding

Sherri,
Thank you for continuing to write and inspire us. You are a gift!

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Sherri Woodbridge avatar

Sherri Woodbridge

Marianne - thank you!

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Paula avatar

Paula

Thank God for your gift of writing because you are truly an inspiration to me. Keep up the good words.

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Sherri Woodbridge avatar

Sherri Woodbridge

Paula - thank you so much for your kind and encouraging words. Readers like you are what keep me writing. I am glad you have been inspired! -sherri

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Reg Parks avatar

Reg Parks

Sherri, Paula's words express my sentiments as well! I so much look forward to and value your columns. I print and file many of them -- to return to when in need of encouragement or inspiration.
Wish that we could meet in person.
Blessings from Tucson,
Reggie Parks

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Sherri Woodbridge avatar

Sherri Woodbridge

Reggie- i am so blessed to have readers like you. Thank you!!!

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Mark Brody avatar

Mark Brody

Have you considered dictation software such as Dragon Nuance for dictating on a computer? It does require both (i) a monetary investment of a few hundred dollars to buy the software and a high quality microphone (which I strongly recommend over the built in computer microphone) and (ii) a time investment to learn how to use the software (including its quirks) and how to customize it for your needs. I have found it to be well worth the investment. It has made it way less frustrating to write documents and emails, including this post.

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Sherri Woodbridge avatar

Sherri Woodbridge

Thanks, Mark, for teh great info - i will eagerly look into it!

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Bert Shure avatar

Bert Shure

Hi Sherri:

I enjoy your writing. Keep it up!

I spend a lot of time on the computer and I had problems with typing that seem to have gone away. I used to repeat words when typing and have problems with capitalization.

I started using a plug-in grammar checker called Grammarly. It is a life-saver. It flags loads of mistakes in spelling, punctuation, and grammar. I get a report weekly that summarizes my writing and compares my output and mistake tally with other users. I passed a million words checked last week.

Dictating might be better for you. I dictate text messages on my mobile phone, but I prefer typing on my computer.

Cheers,

Bert

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