When the photo arrived in my inbox, I clicked on it and thought: The image is like a riddle.
What is colorful and varied yet single-minded; laughing yet quite serious; shaking and quivering yet not afraid?
The answer smiled back at me in the picture of my fellow graduates of the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation’s (PDF) Clinical Research Learning Institute.
The men and women who came to immerse themselves in all that is PD came from all walks – literally and figuratively – each with our unique gait and each with our story. A dancer, a doctor, a physicist, a pharmacist, an architect, an artist . . . mothers, fathers, grandparents. We came from as far west as California and Washington, and east from Rhode Island and North Carolina. There were southerners from Alabama and Texas and northerners from Massachusetts and New York. Despite our varied backgrounds, we had one focus: learning about better treatments and the path toward a cure for PD.
A sense of humor prevailed across the two-and-one-half days. Among the researchers and doctors presenting, even the statistician cracked a joke or two. But none of us could be more serious when asking questions about better treatments and the path toward a cure for PD.
And in that room full of brilliant-minded professionals there existed signs of nearly every symptom of PD. One could get discouraged, or opt to reach into the sense of humor bag and say, There was a whole lot of shaking going on, or that Shaking up is hard to do. I, with these fearless individuals, will reach even deeper, though, into pockets of courage and dedication. The latest and greatest about better treatments and the path toward a cure for PD will involve us.
How honored I am to have been a part of the Institute and to join this team who, together, may very well solve the riddle that is Parkinson’s.
(Check out the PDF web site article for more info on the Institute:)