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Participant Information

Joyce Franson


I was diagnosed with PD in 1997. It was quite a shock because, for two years before that, I was told that I was just aging. When I developed a tremor, I went to a neurologist and was diagnosed with PD.

For the past twenty years, I had attended an oil painting class for seniors. I loved it and still do. I started painting English cottages and landscapes as well as animals.

As my PD progressed, it became more difficult for me to drive and walk long distances. It was hard to travel so I started painting more. I would paint my memories of other countries. Through my painting, I am able to relive my travels. I went to art shows and exhibited and sold some of my work.

I do not believe my artistic ability has changed except I am much slower and more forgetful. I am so fortunate my three daughters help me and encourage me to keep moving. My support group, my exercise group, my painting class, and teacher are so supportive. I have met so many wonderful people thru PD...everyone has a different degree of PD but we help each other.

The good thing that has come from my PD is that I have met many friends that otherwise I would not have. The other really good thing is I lost fifty pounds! I meet so many people who are suffering and most never complain. In closing, I just want to say I hope and pray for help for funding our drugs and some medical advancements in the future.