Lori Patin brings so many wonderful qualities to her struggle against Parkinson’s – strength, persistence, determination. Still the quality that impresses me most is her attitude. Now attitude is a very difficult quality to pin down. The best way I can describe Lori’s attitude is to show a great example – her attitude towards hallucinations, a common side effect of Parkinson’s meds.
“One funny thing was that I started having hallucinations,” Lori told me. “I know that sounds really quite odd that I find those funny, and my family certainly was not laughing, but I wasn’t scared at all. I would get to talk to my father who has been dead for years or to my brother who lives in Ohio. Or I would see lots of animals, dogs, coyotes, even a zebra. Once I told Aly that she was in the living room delousing a zebra. You have to laugh at that one. These hallucinations weren’t transparent; they had form and shape and were as three dimensional as you or I. They didn’t scare me because I knew they were hallucinations, partly because it wasn’t logical to have my dead father in the family room or a zebra in the living room and partly because I just knew it was not real.”