Last month, I faced a hard task. Hard, not in the sense of strenuous work or tough negotiations; not climbing a mountain or training for a marathon or anything else that could really be deemed difficult. No, it was hard because I was not ready. It was hard because I simply did not want to do it. Likewise, my first attempt at this post was so “Wendy Whiner-ish” that I had to set it aside. I knew I needed an attitude adjustment. I just didn’t know when or from whom that inspiration might come.
You can do this hard thing, You can do this hard thing It's not easy I know but I believe that it's so You can do this hard thing.
When Richard received his Parkinson’s Disease (PD) diagnosis on July 23 last year, my first, librarian-like reaction was to dig into the research. I relied on Mayo’s website for my introduction; I joined the Parkinson’s Foundation’s online community which generates lots of helpful emails on a regular schedule; I even downloaded the 174 page care-giver’s guide. I think that is what stymied me. I wanted the Cosmo version of a guide. I wanted 10 easy steps to understanding a complicated, incurable disease or 10 easy strategies to supporting without smothering. I did not want; I could not handle 174 pages. I reverted to learning by osmosis – simply observing the changes I saw or listening to what Richard was discovering since he was doing the hard work of research. I did give PD a new name. In my head this progressive disorder that affects the nervous system became FD – that F*****g Disease.
Hearts hung like laundry On backyard clothes lines Impossible just takes A little more time
This past weekend, I had the special privilege to spend time with Carrie Newcomer , a musican and songwriter the Boston Globe describes as a “prairie mystic.” As I served as chauffeur between hotel and church, sat through a rehearsal and sound checks, enjoyed a concert and particpated in two Sunday morning services at which Carrie and her accompanist, Gary Waters, were the featured musicians, Carrie’s poignant stories, inspirational lyrics, and haunting melodies jumpstarted my attitude adjustment. I felt I could step away from selfish introspective, from frustrated inability to “fix” the problem and into the simple acknowledgement that Richard and I will continue to adapt and manage.