It’s one thing for me to notice that I’ve become a bit more unstable on my feet, or that I’m beginning to slur or stutter occasionally, or that my muscle control is lessening a bit. But when I’m told that this means that my disease is progressing, it gives me a headache.
I mean, look up the word progress in the dictionary. “Progress: gradual improvement, betterment, moving forward, ascension, advance, enhancement.” This describes my physical diminishment?
Wouldn’t it be better for me to say instead, “My Parkinson’s Disease is decrepitating”? Or how about, “My disease is dilapidating”? Or maybe declivitating? Imagine the use:
“Welcome to Walmart. How are you today?”
“I’m declivitating. And you?”
“Welcome to Denny’s. How many guests?”
“Two non-smoking and one declivitating, please.”
I mean, let’s be realistic and use the right words. Saying that our Parkinson’s is progressing makes it sound as if it’s going to conquer us. And we won’t let it do that.
We know as Christians that the best part of life is ahead. We get new bodies in heaven, and they will obey our commands. They’ll walk easily, speak clearly, and feel full of energy. That confident hope sustains us, no matter how much our disease “progresses.”
Behold, I tell you a mystery; we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed. For this perishable must put on the imperishable, and this mortal must put on immortality.
—1 Corinthians 15:51, 53
In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.