You Are More than a Diagnosis - PMD Alliance

When people are faced with a chronic and degenerative disease, it’s easy to lose track of all that makes them who they are and, instead, to become their diagnosis. We know that each person is more than a diagnosis, whether they’re living with a movement disorder themselves, or are a care partner or other loved one.

In collaboration with our partners at Supernus Pharmaceuticals , we invited our In Sync!® support groups across the country to explore who they are—where they come from, what matters most to them, whom and what they love—to reveal the rich tapestry of their lives. We have so many diverse parts of ourselves that make us whole and that deserve to be celebrated.

Lauren Simmons, PMD Alliance Ambassador, captured this spirit in her  “I Am”  poem, finding the places of her past that have made her who she is and that moment of diagnosis that shuffled what she thought was the plan. Still, she returns to hope.

I am from changing seasons
From the crunch of dry leaves under scuffling feet
to biting cold sleet on my cheeks on the way to school
From family gatherings along the coast to the sting of
mosquitos on a heavy summer night.


I am the capturer of memories
The click, click of my shutter and shy smiles
peeking around corners
The paparazzi of celebrations
and community happenings.


I am the lone speck of dust
swirling in a cyclone at the doctor’s office
Left to pick up the pieces
Numb, with no compass or roadmap.


I am stiff and sore muscles twisting and pushing
I am from determination and perseverance
From sweat and from tears
I am from the strength in my gut
knowing God’s got my back.


I am from hope
From pink sunrises and orange sunsets
And fragrant petals that will bloom another year.

Lauren Simmons – Ambassador

If you’re an In Sync!® Support Group Leader who would like to share this creative and contemplative activity with your group, you can learn more about the toolkit here.

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