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walI was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease at age 50. I had a busy job supervising itinerant special education providers in rural eastern Oregon. With two kids at home and hard-working husband, the stress of the job and the progression of the disease took me down.

  I started researching the disease and I kept seeing this image of the typical person with  littleold manParkinson’s Disease.  The old man with a bent back, tremors in his hand, shuffling walk, stiff body and problems with his thinking did not fit me at all! I was an active woman just entering middle age with dreams of travel in my retirement.

I refused to be reduced to this inaccurate description and set out to change the picture to that of a  modern woman with a progressive neurological disease for which there is no cure.

My doctor told me to exercise, eat well, and take my medication and I would have 5-10 “good” years. I decided to do more than that. I thought I could combat the progression of the disease by doing the activities I loved in my youth.

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Shooting baskets, playing guitar and hiking were some of those activities. I added tai chi, massage, acupuncture, bike riding, and kayaking to the list of traditional and non-traditional treatments for Parkinson’s.  I took my medicine and suffered the side effects which caused obsessions, one of which was eating.

Great experiences while I walked over 1000 miles on the Camino de Santiago in France and Spain and with TEAM Pedaling for Parkinson’s and Davis Phinney Foundation while cycling across IOWA (x4), lead me to start writing. As time passed and more people read my stories I was encouraged to publish.   My first novel, a memoir, was published in early 2019. It is titled THE RIBBON OF ROAD AHEAD: One Woman’s Remarkable Journey with Parkinson’s Disease.


Living with the degenerative neurological disease, Parkinson’s, ULTREIA has become a word that guides me. I have chosen it as the name of my business ULTREIA BOOKS. It comes from Latin and old French and means “unfailing courage”. In the old days, pilgrims would call “Ultreïa” to each other as an encouragement to “Go up, go further!” Nowadays we would say “You can do this thing”. It takes courage to live with Parkinson’s. I hope you will see in me that I live a life of

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just  unfailing courage

4 thoughts on “Home

  1. Carol. Thank you. Wow, amazing work on your book.
    Thank you for sharing your story, your journey.
    I have admired you in your work, and even more now in the way you have been tackling your Parkinson’s.

    I know many who have a chronic illness, my mom being one of them, and see how all of you with your ups and downs, manage to be an example of perseverance, strength and faith in God.
    You are an example to so many.

    God bless you.

  2. What a fantastic book full of adventure and so inspirational! Carol is a true warrior, fighting back against Parkinson’s with true grit, humor and grace. A true testament of what a “never give up” attitude can achieve. Reading her story made me laugh, cry and want to cheer at times. As a fellow person with Parkinson’s, I am in awe of her strength and positivity. A must read for anyone needing a little encouragement and a reminder of what we are capable of when we dig deep!!

  3. Love to hear what you have been doing, Carol. I have a friend with early onset Alzheimer’s diagnosed last year and had to take early retirement. She is battling it similar to you. Wanted to call you but no longer have your contact number. Love to hear from you directly. Sounds like I need to add your book to my to-do list.

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