50 Columns Later, I’m Still Inspired by My Parkinson’s Community

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by Lori DePorter |

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According to a 2013 article in The New York Times, the average American knows about 600 people.

Since the debut of “Life, Lemons, and Lemonade” over two years ago, I have met many doctors, community educators, foundation directors, researchers, and people with Parkinson’s disease. Between fundraisers, Zoom support groups, research studies, webinars, and fitness classes, my life has been busy.

While I don’t know how many people I have met, I do know that I have never met a person with Parkinson’s that I didn’t like. Although Parkinson’s is not a rare disease, I still think the Parkinson’s community is rare in terms of the definition “unusually good or remarkable.”

I have been inspired by many people who live with rare courage, strength, and humor. I have watched friends face dementia with Lewy bodies and progressive supranuclear palsy with both tenacity and humbling grace.

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I have now published 50 columns about Parkinson’s. My columns have touched on a plethora of subjects, from exercise, family, dancing, and clinical trials to my husband Mike’s perspective. However, the most important columns are those that were inspired by my family and fellow Parkinson’s warriors.

A sincere thank-you

“Life, Lemons, and Lemonade” is a culmination of our stories — the good, the bad, and everything in between. It has been a privilege to share them. I look forward to us continuing to empower one another and to share our journeys, and I hope we all find joy and laughter along the way. As comedian Red Skelton said, “No matter what your heartache may be, laughing helps you forget it for a few seconds.”

Parkinson’s or not, it’s important to find the lighter side in life and escape for a moment. In fact, it’s healthy and good for the soul. Take some time for laughter therapy. Start your day with a smile. A little humor may be just what you need to get through a rough day. Perhaps your smile will even help someone else who’s having a bad day.

Those of us with Parkinson’s work together and are a force of nature. As a community, we will continue to grow. We will use all of our resources, including social media. It is a powerful tool for staying connected and sharing information. There is a cure out there in our future, and we won’t stop until we find it.

Until then, I am proud to stand beside you all. Thank you for inspiring my writing over the last two years and for allowing me to be part of the Parkinson’s community. I am grateful for each and every one of you.

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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, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to Parkinson’s disease.

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