In 2001, Michael was diagnosed with Young Onset Parkinson’s at the age of 37. As a working professional with three young boys and a wife that worked full time as well, Michael couldn’t afford to be sick. Taking his prescription and moving on, Michael didn’t talk about his Parkinson’s.
Pushing through his progressing symptoms, Michael attempted to work until 2011, when his health deteriorated tremendously and managing his numerous medications became overwhelming. Following a two-day evaluation, Michael’s neurologist put him on a new medication regimen and advised him to take disability.
Attending his first Parkinson’s support group meeting in November 2011, Michael met someone who had gone through a very similar experience and was inspired by him to make a change, filing for disability. Without the stress of maintaining his job on top of his symptoms, Michael was able to focus on exercising and managing stress. After a few months, Michael’s medication amount reduced by two thirds and his sleep improved.
Today, Michael engages with many Parkinson’s groups and has found that staying involved is very important to his personal health. Living well for Michael means helping others, and he is passionate about the opportunity to help others recognize the positivity of living well today.