New Hyde Park resident and published author Jennifer Maharajh first started noticing symptoms of Parkinson’s when she was just 31 years old. After being diagnosed with the disease years later, Maharajh’s diagnosis has now propelled her onto a path of discovery where she is determined to help bring awareness about Parkinson’s to others.
“I was 31 when I began getting tremors on my left hand,” she said. “The doctors did numerous tests and found nothing, and ruled out Parkinson’s because of my age. Then finally in 2015, I was officially diagnosed.”
Ever since Maharajh was a little girl, she always dreamt of becoming a published author since writing was always considered to be her therapy.
“Writing has always been a way for me to create and feel inspired,” she added. “I actually wrote my first book after going through a tough time and feeling frustrated. My inspiration for writing my books came during the midst of the pandemic. I’m creative and I have a passion to bring my creativity to life.”
Maharajh recently wrote her fourth children’s book Mommy’s Losing Her Superhero Powers, which is all about faith, hope and resilience.
“When the unexpected happens, it changes everything,” she explained about the book. “A family comes together to find strength and courage to understand it. A young mom struggling with her emotions finds comfort in her children. A family comes to terms with reality, but fights to preserve all they have. A heartfelt story of truth and life. The journey of a family facing adversity as they embrace faith, love and each other. The power of positivity. It’s a family’s journey of overcoming the challenges of dealing with the diagnosis of Parkinson’s and being open to communication and working together as a family. It’s a reflection of my own journey and how my family , especially my two daughters, are being strong, courageous and fighting back to live a happy and healthy life.”
About 10 to 20 percent of those diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease are under the age of 50. Approximately 60,000 new cases of Parkinson’s are diagnosed each year in the United States.
“It’s important to be aware that this is a growing neurological disease that does affect young people,” she said. “Parkinson’s is a condition you can manage and even reverse through exercise, diet, meditation, positive mindset and empowering yourself with knowledge. Parkinson’s does not have to rob you of living your life and achieving your goals and dreams. It’s not your identity or who you are. Through this disease, I have found my purpose and I’ve become a stronger and better version of myself.”
Maharajh is also the founder of Simply Healthy Global Media, a one-stop shop for health and wellness products, motivational apparel, podcasts, books and more. She is also a global summit producer and speaker, host of the Simply Real Podcast, health and beauty entrepreneur and founder of JM Designs Inspired Apparel.
So what is it about New Hyde Park that Maharajh feels so connected to?
“I’ve lived in New Hyde Park all my life,” she said. “I was born, raised and attended elementary school and high school, and my nieces and nephews and kids all are growing up here. New Hyde Park is my home, my place of security and safety and I love the people in this neighborhood. I love running into old teachers and high school friends and the sense of belonging at New Hyde Park will never fade. Everything I need is here.”
Maharajh wants others to know that they can always make the impossible possible just by believing in themselves, by believing in the process and believing in those around them.
“You can change the narrative of your story just by envisioning your future and manifesting what you truly want in life,” she said. Setbacks and challenges are opportunities for greatness. Pain is a pathway to purpose. Live in the moment, enjoy creating precious memories and be aware of the beauty around you. Find your purpose, live your passion and create your destiny.”