Parkinson's Fighter: Corinne

“Around 4 year ago, friends pointed out that my left arm was always folded against my body. Then I noticed that I was not balancing it when walking either and that my left foot was blocked. I went to see a doctor that sent me to a physiotherapist. After 30 sessions without any results, the physio advised me to see a neurologist who told me he thought I might have Parkinson’s disease. I totally rejected the idea. For me Parkinson’s meant old people with tremors! I dismissed it as nonsense but at the same time I was very depressed to be left with those problems without any explanation. After 3 months – the time necessary to get an appointment – I went to see another neurologist, a renowned professor, who immediately made the same diagnosis. He was very direct, stating things clearly and leaving no room for doubt, but he also told me that, even if there is no cure for the disease, you don’t die from it and there are treatments available. It was a rude wake-up call but also a relief. I knew my enemy and I would be able to fight it. I went home and searched “Parkinson” on Internet. Seeing the results, I thought this was going to be tough but that was also how I found the association called “La Tulipe”. I needed to go and see, meet people... And thanks to them, I started drawing. The disease bothers me, even if it is not always visible. Since I have no tremor, people are sometimes surprised but for me the symptoms are pains and stiffness, with phases that are more difficult than others. And I cannot move my left hand properly which forces me to use the other one even though I’m a lefty. But the disease also brought me unexpected things like drawing. I learnt to enjoy life as much as possible and I put things into perspective more easily now. I have become very active, I do a lot of sport, gym at home every day and regularly with a coach, but also badminton and swimming. I am always on the move, I meet people and develop friendships that would have never happened otherwise.”