Stories on Curt's Human Disease Website

Name of the Disease: Parkinsons Disease

Author: Verily Rose

Story Submitted March, 1999:
Age = 61
Years with disease= 12
Occupation = Retired GM
City = Lockport,  NY

    I would not admit that I had Parkinsons. I went to different
doctors. one would say I had Parkinsons, the next would say I didn't.
    When I first admitted to myself that I had Parkinsons, I
became suicidal. I I thought I had no reason to live.
   I was working on an assembly line at General Motors. My fellow
employees really saved my life.  I had written songs & poems for twenty
years, they encouraged me to write.
I had some poems published. and got some recognition in contests that I
entered. I had to take a medical retirement. I missed work, I missed the
people. I was bored sitting home.
Then my fighting spirit took over. I had always wanted to sing. So at 52 I
got up in front of an audiance for the first time. Along with my Brother
and Sisters we published an a tape of twenty-three gospel songs, encluding
two of mine. We donated the money to charity. Soon afterwards I had a tape
of ten of my songs made.
  I have an older Brother who has Parkinsons. He has lost his voice. He
can barely whisper. Singing has been theropy for my vocal cords. My voice
is much stronger now. One sister who sings with me has parkinsons also.
Altho she won't admit it.
    I've always been the kind of person who, if someone told me I couldn't
do something, I would do it or die trying. So for a challange, I decided
to take up whittleing.  I started making Old World Santa Clauses. I
whittle their faces & hands. They have stuffed bodies, I make them
outfits, and their coats are made of real fur, I even make leather boots
for them. I whittle with a razor blade knife.( only cut myself once) I'm
making one for each of my Grand Children, and my Sisters.
    Then I started a singing group. Once a month we have a get togather
for singers. and songwriters. Last time we had nineteen acts.
    I also volenteered for a Parkinsons  study. I hope to do another one
I am so busy. And I can honestly say I am having fun.
    I have to have back surgery next month. I ask The Doctor if he would
plan it around my singing. He said yes.
    Sometimes I even count Parkinsons as a blessing. If not for
Parkinsons, I would still be working. I wouldn't have time for doing what
I love. I have had the privilege of making a difference in the lives of so
many people. People hug me and cry, and tell me that they love me for what
I'm doing. So you see I am Blessed. I have three wonderful children, ten
beautiful Grandchildren, And a Husband who loves me, helps with housework,
and seldom complains. What more could I want?
   I cannot believe how good I feel about myself. My songs are on the
radio. So many people say I am an inspiration to them. Last month they
named my group The Verlie Rose Counry & Gospel Sing. I am so busy, I am
doing what I always wanted to do.
    I would just lke to say to anyone who reads this, We often think we
are useless. (I thought that for fifty years) That we can't make a
I believe God gives us a passing thought now and then that we should act
upon.  I ask God to take away my  songwriting talent. I wanted someone
else tto use my songs. but I had no way to get them to anyone. my talent
left me.  Then I got Parkinsons. In my depression I turned back to
writing. no matter how I tried I could not write.  Then I said, " God if
you'll give me back my talent, I will use it. We have to toss out the
first crumb. When I stopped thinking What can I do for Verlie, and started
thinking what can I do to make someone else have a better day? everything
started happening. People all over this area are singing, and listening to
my songs & poems.
    Never sell yourself short. We were put on this earth for a reason. I
dropped out of school in my freshman year. And here I am writing. I
sometimes write words I don't know the meaning of. When I look them
up,they fit. I use to worry about punctuation. now I figure if the message
is good enough, someone else can worry about that.
I'll share a poem or two and then shut up. God bless you
          The Gift
Sometimes we sit, and worry and fret
About what we can get for ourselves.
But our blessings are so much richer,
When we do for soneone else
If we'd take a stand, in the interest of man,
If each morning we would pray,
"Lord give my blessing to somebody else"
Then we'd have a wonderful day.

Sometimes just a word of encouragement heard.
By a heart so heavy with doubt,
Will take wings and fly to heaven's gates.
Where all of God's blessings pour out.
The most precious gift that we can give,
Cannot be bought or sold.
It's a kind word or deed to someone in need
And it's worth more than solid gold.
Verlie Rose (c)

          Growing Old Gracefully
I'm in an awful quandry, won't someone help me please?
I'm searching, looking for the way to grow old gracefully.
I've heard that phrase most all my life and now at sixty-three
I sit here laughing to myself,'bout growing old gracefully.

The one who said that was a fool. And you can bet he was young.
It irks me to think he knows so much 'bout what he's never done.
I have got some news for him. Some day he will see,
There is no way on God's green earth, to grow old gracefully.

Oh I was something in my day. You should have seen me dance.
Now my days are usuall spent, trying not to wet my pants.
With brittle bones, and schuffeling feet,and eyes that hardly see.
I'm doing the very best I can, to grow old gracefully.

Someone that I recognize will stop to say hello.
And my mind goes completely blank. Their name I do not know.
I spend my days daydreaming of how it use to be.
And I hear me talking to myself. 'bout growing old gracefully.

The teeth I wear are not my own, each night i take them out.
My big toe aches incessently. The Doctor says it's gout.
My eyebrows are on crooked, Parkinsons you see.
But I'll be fine if my depends just don't give out on me.

My hearing aid will start to scream each time that someone calls.
Oh how I'd love to take that thing, and bounce it off the wall.
My cheeks have lost their rosy glow,my hair has turned to grey.
The stylish clothes that I once wore, are out of style today,

My skin has grown so loose on me, I'll get up off a chair,
I'll take a step then realise my butt's still sitting there.
Slobbers running down my chin.And no one cares for me.
Tell me again that stupid line bout growing old gracefully.

Grow old gracefully my foot. If I could find that man,
I'd take his scrawny little neck in these arthritic hands.
I'd squeeze until his eyes bug out, I say that's the Parkinsons freeze.
And I'd ask him why he told that lie 'bout growing old gracefully.
Verlie Rose (c)
words = Parkinsons is not a death sentence.
First find a Doctor who will work with you. That was the worst thing I had
to deal with. That was when I almost comitted suicide.
To a caregiver. The medicine has to be adjusted to the patient. If your
Doctor is unwilling to let you adjust the medicine to what helps the most
, For the sake of your loved one , Please find another one. Don't be
afraid to speak up to a Doctor. You can always find another one.
 Hit the Back Button on your browser