Elizabeth Dekle from San Franciso, CA
Diagnosed with PD 1 year ago, at the age of 26, my life has been and will continue to be completely transformed by Parkinson’s disease – for the better. After a 5 year struggle with mysterious symptoms and numerous consultations with various departments, I was finally given a diagnosis in March of 2011 after one 30 minute visit with a new doctor.
Since learning I have Parkinson’s I have been able to revolutionize my life and create a better version of myself, even though I had to leave professional kitchens as I had graduated from culinary school and was working as a pastry chef. Within the first year after my diagnosis, I have written a book to help other EOPD patients, started a blog to help myself and others understand what it’s like to be 26, now 27 and have this incurable disease, and I will be walking in my first marathon in July. I am also proud to say that I have raised nearly $500 for PD research! My goal in life now, is to show others through mentoring, and my actions, that Parkinson’s doesn’t have to be so mysterious and debilitating. I know the road ahead of me in long and will be difficult, but now that I can walk upright, I’ll be greeting my new obstacles as opportunities for growth, learning, and a chance to be more than just another patient at my clinic.