Accepting the Invitations You’re Afraid to Accept Can Be Worth It

Sherri Woodbridge avatar

by Sherri Woodbridge |

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Sherri Journeying Through

Several years ago, my youngest son discovered the camera, and through its lens, he discovered a whole new world.

On one particular day, I was feeling down and he asked why.

“I don’t know,” I replied. There was no real reason. Some days are just like that when you have Parkinson’s disease. It comes for free with the experience of having the disease.

“You wanna come with me to take pictures?” he asked. That was unusual, as he usually went alone to do his assignments for his photography class.

“No, I’ll stay here.” No one else was home and I wasn’t going to go with him and make him miserable.

“Are you sure?” Rarely did he ask someone to go. Even rarer was the second invitation. I was tempted but replied with the same answer.

“Come on. You’ll feel better,” he said with a slight grin and cocked his head in an attempt to cheer me up.

I smiled inside, my outside smile refusing to work. Thanks, Parkinson’s (sarcasm intended). “You go ahead. I’ll be fine,” I answered.

And so he went off to get a few things from his room and as he went out the front door, I went downstairs.

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As I got to the bottom stair, I turned around and went back up as fast as I could. Yes, I did want to go. I did want to feel better. But most of all, I never wanted to regret turning down that rare invitation of spending time with my youngest son. I opened the door, hoping against hope that he was still there. The car was gone, but he was running up the driveway!

“Can I still come?” I asked.

“Yeah, I just forgot something.” I thanked God, put on my shoes, grabbed my camera and my coat, and got into the car.

That day, we took pictures of moss and birds, pictures in blues and greens, squawking geese and floating ducks. We saw thunderclouds, rusted cars, and nests hidden in the limbs of trees. We climbed over barbed wire fences and stepped in mud holes. We heard blaring guitars in the middle of nowhere and froze in the icy cold air of an Idaho winter. We chased a hawk as it teased us while soaring above in serpentine circles with the air currents over a meadow of frozen wheat stubble. And then, like the moss and the squawking geese and the iced stream, he spotted it.

With blues and grays, pinks and yellows dabbed with gold, there it was, the picture of the day. The sunset sang out to both of us at the same time. And as we both grabbed our cameras to capture the moment, we noticed the tree, framed before the sunset. It was a magnificent picture and moment. A glorious moment.

And I thanked God. I thanked Him for all things good and not so good. For moss on trees and squawking geese. For barbed wire fences and mud holes. For floating ducks and iced-over streams running through snow-covered meadows. For bird nests hidden in limbs of trees and little birds on bare treetops huddled together to keep warm. For the freezing cold and that silly, playful hawk. But most of all, I thanked God for my son and that he forgot something and ran back up the driveway.

“Come on,” he said, “You’ll feel better.” And he was right.

An invitation that wouldn’t quit. A glorious afternoon. Time spent with my son. Parkinson’s? Worth it.


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.


Jean A Murdock avatar

Jean A Murdock

I love what you had to say!! I was DX with MS in 1972 and Parkinson's 6 Years ago and gratitude has been and is key to the amazing life I have. Thank You God!!

Sherri Woodbridge avatar

Sherri Woodbridge

Thanks, Jean, for your comment!

Michael J Church avatar

Michael J Church

Great article! I can totally relate Sherri. My grandkids are a constant source of my motivation and the very reason I am living well with PD.

Sherri Woodbridge avatar

Sherri Woodbridge

Keep on enjoying those grandkids, Michael. Thanks for your comment!

Stephanie avatar


Absolutely amazing story! God Bless you!

Sherri Woodbridge avatar

Sherri Woodbridge

Thanks, Stephanie!

Karen Bate avatar

Karen Bate

Keep those stories coming Sherri. It's almost like having you as a guest in my home! I like the way you make something good out of the not so good and then end up praising God! You are a good role model for us! Thanks

Sherri Woodbridge avatar

Sherri Woodbridge

Karen - thank you so much for your encouraging comment. It made my day!


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