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  • Writer's pictureeva zamora

Doctor of my own body: My journey with Parkinson's Disease by Eva Zamora

Updated: Aug 19, 2021

Doctor of My Own Body:

My Journey with Parkinson's Disease

by Eva Zamora

After being diagnosed in 2013 I took careful consideration if I would stay with my current Neurologist. She was maybe great but I did not feel that holding my hand type of empathy. She briefly gave me a summary of this disease and a small booklet. Off I went into the abyss of the questionable.

Medication? Was I ready for medication? Did I have to take it now?

Why should I take it if there is no cure? What would it help with? After listening to my options I knew none would help

Levodopa; it is used to manage PD symptoms such as tremors, stiffness and slowness of movement. It is absorbed in the intestine and transported to the brain where it is converted to dopamine . Hmm??? But all they say is that there is mild side effects and in some cases

hallucinations, depression, anxiety, dyskinesia, dizziness, confusion, change in sense of taste, low blood pressure, sleep problems, dry mouth, nausea, vomiting , constipation, behavioral problems. The medication may give me a good 5 years, and then what? after my body no longer reacts to it what will happen?. These were my questions and concerns.

I have chosen not to take Levodopa….not just yet. I mean I already have symptoms so why would I want to add anymore.

Why? I don’t know.

I have done may things without thinking too much about my decisions yet this one is the biggest gamble I've made in my life. The rest of my quality life. So I better know what I'm doing.

The doctor I decided to see ,one of the best anywhere, was someone I was only able to see maybe once or twice a year for a 20 min consultation. I guess I was looking for compassion in every visit. Doesn't work that way.

Every visit with my neurologist has me hoping for good news. A cure, a new more advanced medication and a stop to its progression. But no. I am a patient on a chart, my doctor does not remember me after thousands of patients or after 7 months. So I do my assessments, walk back and forth , finger tapping exercises and then talk about every new thing that has been going on with me. And the response is usually, yes, that's part of the progression of Parkinson's. As I walk back to my car I have a knot in my throat and feel I've been punched in the stomach. I get in my car, take a deep breath and I put a CD that I have prepped ready to play a song that makes me burst with happiness so much I want to yell it out, I wanna get out of my car in the middle of traffic and just dance. Cry. Sing loud. I want to jump and twirl and shake off the whole consultation out of my system. I breathe again. Come back. Reality. 2000-2008 In my mind, because nobody knows my body better than me, and mine speaks to me, I feel the trauma in my body came from excessive strain on my spine & neck. My back collapsed when doing a plank then I was t-boned by car and injured my neck but did nothing about it. Did not have insurance for either back or neck traumas. I did see a chiropractor and the nerve pain lessened and that was that. The sports doctor I did see told me if I didn’t take care of this now it would haunt me when I got older. I said , who me? I'm not going to get old….. This was about 25 years ago. I'm 56 now and according to that doctor I am officially old. That didn’t stop me , at the time I was a spin and boxing instructor I continued Spin and yoga. Headstands, jogging, Sure I can do it and lets just add some half marathons to that. I know this maybe was not the solution but it sure made me forget what was going on or maybe I didn’t want to think about it what was really going on in my real life. I thought I was invincible. I was also carrying a financial load on my shoulders. Working day and night at my restaurant , four girls and in a relationship where I was the pillar of my family. Stress became a word I added into my vocabulary of life. I always needed an extra boost of energy. So energy drinks and diet pills kept me afloat. My relationship was not healthy and it was a sad time in my life. I felt miserable. Every night I wanted morning to come so I could go and teach a Spin class and just keep busy. Exercise relieved my stress. This all took a toll for the best, so I thought. When I decided to separate from the father of my children I had to leave and chose to be the main supporter for them and was forced to make the hardest decision of my life and that was to leave my girls and trust that they were independent enough to carry on without me but knowing they would now have financial support and our restaurant to lean on. Two girls in college. Thankful for my job and knowing then that I had to stay.- End of 2008


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