Hello and A Birthday Post

Hello, dear friends! 

Yes, we are still here. Although it may have seemed that we had abandoned the blog due to the absence of posts, I don't think I will ever find it in my heart to say goodbye to this personal journal of ours. It has been a struggle for me to put my thoughts into written words, often drafting blog posts and writing out stories in my head, only to find excuses not to come through and hit the publish button. I also depend a lot on Bianca for the blog's visuals and photos, but starting college as well as pursuing her other interests has made it harder for me to pin her down. Of course, I understand that her studies come first, but I just felt lost without her. However, as always, at the start of each new year, I resolve to do things better. So, here I am again and I sincerely hope to make good of my resolutions this time around.

And what better way to start than with my annual birthday post! I feel a little rusty writing this now, but hopefully I get the hang of things again soon. 

Today, I celebrate my 24th birthday for the second time. I am not in denial or scared that I'll be turning 50 in just two years, I'm just feeling young at heart! My twenty something years were my carefree years. I had no worries or fears, I was in good health and everything just seemed right in my world. So, I'm channeling all those positive energies from the past and believing that my best years are still ahead of me.  

2016 had me going through more downs than ups. My PD symptoms are advancing steadily and I am coming to terms with the fact that I may need someone to care for me and help with my daily activities sooner than I expected.. I try my best to be as independent as I possibly can, and to work around my medication's "on" time. I carefully plan all my trips out of the house to ensure that I'm functioning properly whenever I'm out to do errands or meetings, or even something as simple as having dinner out with friends. Everything has to be timed and in sync with my medication. And it's the same way when we have guests come over at home because the main goal is that I would be able to sit still, converse and feed myself as best as I can. But sometimes the best laid plans don't always work out and my medications fail me. I used to get so frustrated when this happens, but I've learned to let go of things I don't have control of. It has happened that I've spent an hour getting ready, dressing myself to go out of the house, and maybe another hour in traffic to get to my destination, only to find out that I have to turn back home because I can't even get down from the car because my body decides to start shaking and trembling when it's not supposed to.

Of course I still get frustrated, agitated, or even depressed when these things happen, but I don't stay there for too long. I wallow in self pity for a minute or two, then pick myself right back up. I believe that I am able to do this not because I am strong or brave. I believe that God gives me the grace and the courage to go through life's setbacks and the peace that I am experiencing now is from Him alone. I have so much more to be thankful for. I have the love of my family, friends, and even complete strangers who go out of their way to be good to me and to Bianca. We do our best to give back  every chance we get.

I am sometimes hesitant to tell my stories about what I'm going through with my Parkinson's disease for fear of being judged or criticized but the desire to share and inspire others in similar situations is greater. To my dear friends who are reading this, please don''t hesitate to ask me out to lunch or dinner because I look forward to going out, and having the chance to spend time with you is worth all my trouble, really.

I end my birthday post as usual with my infamous jumping shot. I haven't gotten myself a trampoline yet, but I did manage a skip and a hop this year. I didn't hear any complaints from my photographer, so I think it's safe to say that she's pretty impressed.

With love,