Team Fox member Nancy Mulhearn doesn't want people to look at her and feel sorry. "Look at me and say, “You know how to throw a great party!”
When I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease eight years ago at the age of 44, never in a million years did I think my life would be enriched by that frightening discovery. I was devastated and for months told only a few people. Trying to act “normal” was hard work. Life was stressful enough, though, without trying to be so concerned with hiding a shaky hand or shuffle to my walk. I was letting Parkinson’s rule my world. Some things I could control, and my attitude was one that needed improving.
I tried, slowly. After a couple of years, everyone knew. There was shock and concern; but I did not feel pitied. If I was comfortable with a shaky hand, so were others around me. It did not matter. When I told a woman behind a cash register I had Parkinson’s while fumbling for change, she said, “Oh, like Michael J. Fox? He’s so cool”. The stigma of Parkinson’s was dissolving.
Today, I am grateful to be a member of Team Fox for the people, events, and hope we share. My body can shake or freeze or whatever it wants to do when I walk up to a store manager to ask for a donation. I am proud to say I am fundraising to benefit the Michael J. Fox Foundation. I tell anyone and everyone about Parkinson’s, because I want a cure for my friends and future generations too.
On March 22, 2014, please join me at my third Team Fox Gala, “Leave Parkinson’s Behind”. The spectacular Fiddler’s Elbow Country Club in Bedminster, NJ will be the setting. Guests will enjoy a cocktail hour, wonderful dinner, open bar, live music throughout the evening, dancing, and a silent and live auction. Items include vacations to Martha’s Vineyard, and Sedona, Arizona; a lobster bake for 8; and an exquisite necklace chosen especially for this event by Roman Jewelers.
I am thrilled many young friends with Parkinson’s will be attending. Raising awareness that PD is not just your grandparent’s illness is important. Find tickets and hotel information here. (If you need accommodations book by 2/28)