Bob and I went to our ballroom dance class last night, and I found myself in the position of having to explain myself. See, I can only dance for about an hour, and then my legs start to shake and I have trouble moving them (especially the left one). I also get muscle cramps in my feet, and now I'm starting to have "freezing" problems, too, where one leg just doesn't move when the rest of the body does, so I slip and/or fall.
Last night, after a wonderful hour of learning to Samba (a really fun dance, by the way), I slipped a couple of times and almost fell, and since my feet had cramped up and I was having trouble moving anyway, I decided to call it a night. Well, several people tried to get me to keep going; they thought I was just giving up too soon, I guess. I had to explain that I have Parkinson's and I just can't keep going as long as they can. That was good enough for most of the folks, but a couple of the guys clearly didn't get it. They kept trying to encourage me to try again. I know they were trying to help, but it made me feel so "wussy"!
The problem is that I've always prided myself on not being a quitter. I may not be the best at what I'm trying to do, but I stick with it. So, when someone implies that I'm not trying hard enough, it hurts. I don't think that most people understand that it's not just a question of strength and determination. I've got plenty of strength and determination, thank you very much. I have to respect my limits, though, especially if it becomes a safety issue.
I guess next time I should say something like "Gee, I'd love to be able to keep going, but if I do, I'm likely to fall, and that wouldn't be a pretty sight. Besides, I might just take you with me!" That would get them!