Parkinson's and a Promise

Over the Christmas holidays my wife and I were shopping in our local Costco and it just so happened that their seasonal items were on display. Something caught my eye in the distance. It was shiny and red and setting up high. I pushed my cart through the sea of fellow shoppers, all the while my eyes focused on that object that I wanted to get to. “We are not getting it, no matter what it is,” I heard my wife say as she trailed behind me. I hear that a lot.  Despite the crowd and my wife’s standard objections, I arrived at my destination and there it was, a red Schwinn tricycle. I could feel the tears in my eyes welling up as I looked at it. I thought to myself, “I am buying that for my grandson.” I told my wife what I was planning to do. She looked at me and said, “But he hasn’t even been born yet.” He had yet to make his entrance into our world and I wanted to buy a gift that he would not even be able to use for quite some time. I told my wife that I knew it did not make sense, but I wanted to. She smiled and said, “Put it in the cart.”

As we walked through the parking lot, she asked me why I wanted to buy that red tricycle. I knew why the moment I saw it even though I said I was just being impulsive and wanted my grandson to know that his grandfather already loved him even if we had not even met yet.

What I did not tell my wife was that red tricycle was more than a gift to my unborn grandson, it was a destination in my heart, a beacon in the storm that is Parkinson’s disease. Sometimes the big picture is just too big. I have a disease that currently has no cure. The light at the end of the tunnel sometime seems so far away. Our journey to a cure, like all journeys, starts one step at a time. We know the finish line is out there, but I can’t see it yet. I gave myself something I can see in the distance, something I could get to, something my heart wants more than Parkinson’s ability to stop me. It isn’t a cure. It’s red and black and has a bell with tassels on the handles and I can see the day when I pick my grandson up, set him on that red tricycle and he says, “Watch grandpa,” as he peddles away. I’ll be watching buddy!  

Find your red tricycle in life no matter what adversity you face. Just get there and when you do, let your heart tell you what that next leg in your journey will be.

Dominic was born and I became a grandfather. 

Well, I need to grab a workout and a walk with my wife because I promised my grandson I will be there for that ride.  

I am Pat Younts and I Move to Live.


  1. Patrick, this is a wonderful story. Thank you for sharing��


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