The Old Me vs. The New Me

I wrote this poem for my blog, Parkinson's Journey (www.parkinsonsjourney.com) and thought I'd share it here... Enjoy.

I used to be happy

I used to be a lot of fun...

so I've been told.

What happened to me?

The me that used to not have to take pills to feel good?

The me that used to laugh and dance and sing?

The me, even I liked?

Even my kids say they want their 'old mom' back.

(By the way - so do I.)

How can I give them what was lost?

Get back what was taken away?

(Involuntarily, I might add.)

I try to stay 'up',

stay positive

but it's positively hard to do

when this thing -

this monster -

this thing called Parkinson's disease

insists on having it's way

and every time you start feeling like

the 'old you',

the 'new you' butts in.

Sometimes I don't have a choice in this.

Sometimes I don't get to choose

the up days

from the down days

and the in-between days

from the lost days.

And sometimes

the bad days really are as bad as they seem

and the good days are really better than it looks.

It's a game this little monster plays -

deceiving you

deceiving me.

But I'm going to try

and try real hard

to hold on

to the old me.

And I mean that figuratively,

despite the color of my hair,

of which I earned each

and every gray strand

being a mom

when I was the old me

without Parkinson's disease

and the rest

from having Parkinson's disease.

I'm going to try

to be up

when I'm down

and not cry

when I feel like sobbing uncontrollably

over things lost

and if I find it hard

to find the old me

while living the new me

please don't give up on whoever I am -

because the old me

really is alive inside -

struggling to be freed.

22 Replies

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  • A lovely moving poem thankyou for posting. Keep positive and keep smiling.

    Take care

    Andy :-)

  • Thanks, Andy. Have a great day! :)

  • Great Poetry.!

  • Thanks so much, merlethegirl! I like the name! :)

  • Well said. Hang in there.

  • Thank you , Jerebet! :)

  • hi

    great poem

    keep smjiling

    ;love jill

    :-)

  • Thanks so much, jillannf6! have a great day!

  • You,unchanging you

    are always there with me

    I treasure you,

    your invincible spirit

    your indomitable strenght

    so you change on the outside

    we all do

    but you, unchanging you

    are always there

    with me

    Smile

  • Very Nice! :o)

  • Very nice - Thank you! :)

  • Lovely poem. Sometimes it's a stuggle to stay positive but we do because we know we have to. Keep smiling.

  • Thanks so much,tlongmire! :)

  • thank you ALL for your kind and encouraging words. Have a great day! :)

  • *hug* :)

  • Thank you for sharing. I find when I "try" to be the old me and do more than I should, that is when I end up being more symptomatic. I am still trying to find a balance, litterally and figurtively!

  • I love your poem! I can so relate to every word. I'm struggling to hold on the the "old" me, too.

    I still have children at home and a husband, and they want the "old" me back, too. The one who is ever present and cool and collected; not the "new" one on a roller coaster of ups and downs. I'm just wanting to coast, but PD won't let me.

    May I copy this poem and add your name. I would like to show my family.

  • Tonya - Thanks for the encouraging words and yes, please share it ifi speaks to or for you. That's why I write. Have a great weekend. :)

  • I haven't posted here much. Hope this is in the right place.

    Certainly some of our cognitive changes can look like personality changes to our families and close friends and even to ourselves. These changes can show up soon after diagnosis for young onseg people and be very discouraging, but often they don't get much worse, I am told, By the time you get to 60 or 65, your "normal" associates may have caught up to you, and you'll be more experienced at coping. In fact, the doctor that gave me this information said that I should "cultivate a habit of optimism."

    So, when I seem weirdest I say to my family: "I'm in here! Don't give up on me!" And when I feel like bearing down on myself, I remember that I have gained in some areas when I lost in others and, due to the plasticity of the brain, my more creative side is stronger and more expressive (saw that on a daytime talk show about neuroscience yesterday). By the way, I have been diagnosed for 13 years as a young onset and am now 66

    I keep a folder for my computer for "inspiration and boosts," and I do some journaling. I wrote this a couple of years ago when I needed a boost:

    "This is not the life described in the script they handed me in the beginning, but this is the life I got. Having a chronic, degenerative neurological disorder is not the worst life possible, except at the beginning and the end, and I'm not throwing away my enjoyment of life and my own dear self in order to achieve purity of suffering (meaning me only, not the reader) . Maybe my team can stave off some of the worst effects until I'm ready to depart, anyhow. Why suffer now for what hasn't happened yet? I'm doing other things, more creative things, that seem all the more valuable because of the struggle that went into them, the price that they exacted from my life. The higher good is probably served better now. I know I lead a sounder life, when so many temptations could lead to misery and confusion."

    I hope this helps, SherriW. Your poem is wonderful, and I hope you'll write more as you live into a new and greater You.

    Please discuss your mood and feelings with your doctor, too.

    Jaye

  • Thanks so much, Jaye - that was absolutely beautiful. Thanks for sharing. I discuss most everything with my doctor, so he knows me pretty well. Thanks again for sharing. :)

  • Thanks for the wonderful poetry and inspirational writing. I feel like the real me is trapped on the inside.trying so desperately to get out.

  • maryalice - Thanks for the kind words. Maybe we'll get out on the same day! :)

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