16/05/2013 13:30 BST | Updated 15/07/2013 06:12 BST

No Bucket List for Me


I've always enjoyed watching movies, enabling me to escape reality, even if only for an hour or two. I thoroughly enjoyed a film 'The Bucket List' with Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson, and somehow the term 'the bucket list' has become a popular phrase when describing one's wish list. I find this saying rather negative, since it refers to things one hopes to do before "kicking the bucket"; which is an old English expression meaning: "to die". How morbid is that! The most common theory, is it comes from the Middle Ages when execution by hanging, a noose was tied around the neck while standing on an over-turned bucket. When the bucket was kicked away, the victim would hang until dead, hence "kicking the bucket." What a cheery thought!

So although like most people, I have a 'bucket list' I decided being optimistic at heart, I would need to call my wish list something else that was more appropriate, and so I have a 'Pink List'. Why a 'Pink List' you may well ask? Well if you are sitting comfortably then I'll tell you why pink became significant to me.

When struck down with a degenerative disease, one's life is understandably never the same again, and diagnosed with Parkinson's, naturally many changes occurred. I found it difficult to type due to lack of dexterity in my fingers. Trying several keyboards on different computers, I finally found one I was able to use. The keys amply spaced, are not too sensitive, making it possible for me to type, although thank goodness for the invention of auto-correct! My husband ordered the chosen laptop, and asked me what colour I wanted. Expecting a choice of black or white, I was taken aback when he told me it also comes in pink. Without a second thought, I said "I'd like pink please". My husband made a painful expression, as if it were sacrilege to have a pink laptop, but he'd fetch me the moon and the stars if he could, so a pink lap top it was!

Waiting in the pharmacy one day, a woman and her young son were standing in front of me being served. The boy who was no more than six or seven years old stared at me fixedly. Edging a little closer, he said "my grandpa walks funny like you." I smiled broadly hearing such honesty. Upon seeing me smile, the boy continued, "my grandpa can take his teeth out, can you?" At this, I burst out laughing and shaking my head vigorously, I replied "no." The boy's mother smiled apologetically at me but before she could divert his attention, he asked another question, "My grandpa's hands shake like yours, 'cause he's got Pinkinsons, have you got Pinkinsons?" I was now smiling from ear to ear at his highly observant and amusing conversation. Not wanting to correct his delightful mistake, I said "Yes I have Pinkinsons!" As the embarrassed woman dragged her son out of the pharmacy, he shouted over his shoulder "My grandpa says my smile can light up a room." Still grinning, I looked around the pharmacy at the other people waiting. Everyone had been listening and there were smiles on every face. Grandpa was right; his grandson's smile could light up a room!

My daughter bought me a beautiful pink handbag for my birthday. Never having had a pink handbag before, like any self respecting woman, a new handbag requires a new pair of shoes to match. It took my daughter a while but eventually she found a pretty shoe in the same shade pink with no heel that fitted me perfectly. Now I don't do anything by halves, after all, I suffer from not just one, but two chronic diseases. When I do something, I do a thorough job, and so began the hunt for a pink sweater, which after some time we found. By now, my husband was getting concerned and wondering what he had started with buying me a pink laptop. He finds our garden adorned with many shades of pink flowers, and pink paper serviettes appeared on our table. It's such a bright happy colour; who doesn't love pink?

There are lots of things I hope for, but my biggest wish, like millions of others around the world, is that a cure for Parkinson's is found. So cancel my 'Bucket List', I have a 'Pink List' instead, which sounds so much more cheerful, don't you think?