Rare disease and ice cream were given Julia Gibbs on a plane to Canada from England to marvel her social media friend, Tim Brown, at the Cambridge Centre mall.
“We’ve come to peer a gentleman known as Tim, who has got PSP — Progressive Supranuclear Palsy,” she said, just minutes before surprising Brown outside of the Dairy Queen inside the mall.
It’s a sickness that few people have heard of, she admits, but she is operating tough to trade that.
Gibbs is from Warwickshire in England. She has become acquainted with the ailment years ago when her stepfather became identified and she or he became his caregiver. When he died from the rare neurodegenerative disorder, she decided to begin a Facebook discussion institution to elevate attention. She said it has in view that attracted human beings everywhere in the world living with the disorder, as well as their caregivers and even medical specialists.
That’s where she met Tim Brown, who joined the organization years ago.
Brown, who lives in Ayr with his wife Trish Brown, is a completely active member of the group. The 62-12 months-antique changed into identified with PSP in 2014 and is very open approximately his revel in with the sickness. He’s even written an e-book approximately it.
And to elevate cognizance, he began an ice cream assignment online, posting images of himself enjoying chocolate dipped cone from Dairy Queen.
“One of the matters with PSP is you lose the capability to swallow so you lose the ability to devour,” stated Gibbs. “One of the things that you may commonly consume longer is ice cream, so essentially we set up the ice cream undertaking and we just get everyone to publish satisfied images ingesting ice cream. It’s to get awareness obtainable.”
On Saturday afternoon, after months of secretly speaking with Brown’s wife, Trish, to plot an ice cream join up, Gibbs surprised Brown at the mall in Cambridge.
It changed into the first time the two had ever met in person, and a huge hug turned into the primary thing in order.
“(It’s) quite a surprise” stated Brown, happy to sit down on a bench and chat with his social media buddy over a couple of soft serve cones.
Brown and Gibbs are about raising cognizance, and their join up, which attracted a few local media interest and masses of onlookers, did just that.
Speaking in a raspy however quiet voice — a symptom of his contamination he explains — Brown talked a little approximately his enjoy with PSP.
“Even even though it is a very rare ailment by way of the numbers, it’s no longer so rare if you have it,” he stated, adding that the disease is a cousin to ALS — Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis — additionally referred to as Lou Gehrig’s sickness.
“One’s more aggressive than the opposite but the quit sport is still the identical,” he said. “I actually have a slower shape of progression and that has allowed me to suggest and get obtainable and raise PSP consciousness each hazard I get.”
He stated a number of the symptoms he has experienced consist of cognitive decline, lack of eye movement — he cannot circulate his eyes up or down — lack of stability, falls, mood swings, loss of his voice and muscle spasms.
There is not any remedy for the sickness, but that doesn’t forestall Brown from having an excellent snort or doing his exceptional to elevate awareness.