I’ve dreaded May 31 all month. Today is my one year anniversary of leaving my employment as coordinator of hospital volunteers. The sweet memories are of working with the volunteers, staff, contacts with the patients and the therapy dogs, and the bitter memories include not being able to perform the duties of my job because of Parkinson’s. I've laughed and cried over these bittersweet memories.
I chuckled when I discovered an email that I sent to my neurologist while I was still employed. This illustrates why it was time to leave. An excerpt follows:
Subject Line: Day 23 of New Med–Is This Normal?
After being on the new medication for 23 days, I analyzed my day to determine how I spent my time. Here’s what I came up with:
Slept 12 hours (5 PM-5 AM-too tired to eat dinner)
Got ready for work with slow PD pace-1.5 hours
Worked at my job-7.25 hours
Schlepped back and forth to/from work-2 hours
Ate breakfast and lunch-1 hour
No leisure activities-no lengthy conversations with husband, family or friends; no personal emails, no reading, no writing, no accordion playing, no TV
The only possible “benefit” from being on this med is that I am not as worried about being so unproductive. It’s difficult to see this as progress as before taking this med I slept 10 hours/night. I’ve tried to lower my expectations, but it’s difficult. Is this pattern “normal” for a 56 year old woman with PD that was diagnosed 10 years ago and with deep brain stimulation? Even though, I’m working at my job almost full time as though I don’t have PD, it seems as though all my energy is used in my job with none left for fun activities.