I’m in the final throes of finishing the book, and true to form, it’s not what I thought. I decided, rather than to write a third book, to consolidate all three under one cover. Here’s the intro to the Combined Edition, titled Walking With Parkinson: Finding Faith, Purpose, And Peace:
Almost six years ago, I created a blog called The Crooked Path to document my experiences with Parkinson’s disease. At the time, I was the volunteer leader of a local support group organization in San Antonio, Texas, where I first discovered I was a person with Parkinson’s (PWP).
My goal was to chronicle my journey with the symptoms of the disease, hoping that someone would find comfort in knowing they were not alone. I found I had more to say, though. With my wife Amy’s encouragement, I wrote my first book, Walking The Crooked Path. I was surprised to find that it was not just about Parkinson’s disease, but about finding a way to live with the challenges and surprises life had thrown my way.
Since then, I’ve retired, continued to volunteer, started and stopped several new hobbies, become battery-operated, and have fundamentally changed my view of the world and my place in it. And throughout, I have continued to write. I learned I enjoy writing, and sometimes the words strike a chord in someone.
A few months ago, I sat down to write my third book. I realized, however, that these three books are actually one continuous account that opens a window onto the enormous changes Parkinson’s has brought into my life. It makes sense to me to put them all in one place. The writing is what it is; I am not Hemingway. I did the best I could to be honest. Perhaps this is a chronicle of degeneration; if so, that’s also honest, because Parkinson’s is a degenerative disease. I think there’s some good stuff here, though.
Other than a few “happy-to-glad” changes and correction of a few errors, the first two parts of the book you hold in your hands are as they were published in Walking The Crooked Path and Stumbling Toward Victory. Part III, Seeking The Way Home, is new.
I once read that the way to tell if you’re writing what’s in your heart is to revise until the writing makes you cry. I’ve cried more times over these books than in my previous fifty years. I hope that means something.