Personal Stories

Open Doors

Open Doors

Bonnie Varian
Ontario, CA

Parkinson’s has changed my life. I’m fifty years old, diagnosed in 2005. Insecurity, reluctance and a need for education felt like a whirlwind of uncertainty at the beginning of this journey. I rediscovered my joy and gratitude for each day. Happiness is fleeting like fluctuations of wellness throughout a Parkinson’s day, but inner joy gives me courage to carry on one day at a time with hope and peace in the moments.

I struggled, realizing my body would always ache, my emotions and fatigue could change in a moment’s notice, the comment, “you look so good, I hardly ever see you shake,” is aggravating. Pills are difficult to remember, a battle to take and the cost of a car payment! What I needed was a Spirit of gratefulness for each God-Given Day and to seize those moments that can accomplish my day’s goals. 

Life is Good because God is Good, this inspiration began the day my Neurologist confirmed Parkinson’s as my diagnosis not my psychosis. I was constantly dropping and knocking things over, losing my sandal right off my foot while walking, tipping to one side with balance issues. You actually feel a sense of relief and loss at the same time for the unknown future, but you finally have a diagnosis.

Parkinson’s is the surprise that makes you appreciate each opportunity—to encourage and be encouraged. I needed to understand what, where and how to live with these changes. The internet provided information from symptoms to medications, research to controversy. I attended conferences in Atlanta and Chicago realizing I’m not alone in this battle. Joining support groups to be encouraged, to ask questions, even complain a bit placed the biggest impact on my life.

Life has slowed down. I need to choose daily what is important not what seems urgent. Requip, Azelect, 1200mg CoQ-10, Effexor XR, Clonazepam, exercise and anything to assist my digestion, all worked well for four years. Presently, I’m at a place where my medicine is not as effective and Sinemet was the next hurtle to jump. Nausea, low blood pressure and being overly emotional, is eventually easing. I’ve noticed an increase in energy levels. I recently tried Massage Therapy, it did wonders for my joint pain. I don’t want to mislead anyone, it’s hard to pace yourself and always have your health on the forefront of your mind. But like all things in life God is ever-present and uses all things for His Glory. For this I’m eternally grateful.

The Media reports great strides towards halting the progression of Parkinson’s and new avenues not invasive to the sanctity of life. I’ve come to see each day as gift and each relationship a blessing. We will continue to support one another, encourage one another, by building relationships with Hope for our future.

Life is Good because God is Good.


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