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Associated URL: www.TexasStarWinery.comAttachment: Winery_pix_001.jpgBy Earl Love

I was diagnosed with PD in June 2004.

My Creative Outlet??? I had been making wine as a hobby since 1989 and my wife and I have now won both Texas and International awards with our homemade wines. Then my wife suggested I go to school again to learn more...

While still working (before eventually being laid off), I went back to school in 2006, attending Grayson County College in Texas on weekends studying commercial winemaking. With much support from my wife Lyn, I graduated Magna cum Laude with a degree in Enology and Viticulture (winemaking and care of grape vines) in 2009. However, with the degree came the knowledge it will take years of experience to round out this degree!

My wife and I figure we officially started Texas Star Winery™ when we received our State and Federal permits August, 2009. I’m the Winemaker and Lyn is Assistant WM and Official Taster, Decorator and Social Coordinator… no small job! Our two sons and their wives have been heavily involved also. Our first wines will be offered for sale in late March, 2010. The first two wines are ‘exotics’: Prickly Pear Cactus Wine (the Official State Cactus of Texas) and Hibiscus Flower Wine. Other non-grape wines we are planning in the future are Blueberry, Cranberry and just maybe a dessert-port style Cranberry for the holidays next year.

Even if you are not talented in music or the other common creative outlets, there are always other options!

My Story After My Story

Submitted on December 29, 2009

Brothers and Sisters,

I was glad I read the other submissions AFTER I wrote and submitted my ‘story’. Mine appears so out of context.

So many of the stories reference the “Monster” and talk in depressed verbiage, if not in the main body of the story, then at the end of the commentary as the last sentence/thought. I guess I’m just a newbie, having been diagnosed just five years ago, but I do not believe that resigning one’s self to the ravages of this condition (not ‘disease’) should be the natural progression.

Yes, PD’s a bugger, to say it politely, but in reality, it is no different than approaching the condition of aging or any other condition or unfavorable situation.

The only difference is how, and to whom, we compare ourselves…how we let it get to us.

We are beings of choice. We can choose to approach this from the negative side and frame all thoughts in a negative context or we can choose the positive side and be too damn flowery to be in tune with reality.

But there is another alternative… The middle-of-the-road choice, and all life’s choices are most accurately positioned if taken in this middle-of–the-road context, is that, yes, it’s a bugger, but given that it’s not a dead-end road but instead just an alternate path, that is, yes, a little bit more rugged than most, but we can go along for the ride without suffering the depression and absolute ravages of defeat.

Nothing is ever black or white. It is all grey just to be real. Think about it. No decision is, or ever has been, absolute. Life is a compromise. To not compromise with reality is to be an oak tree in the wind storm and break, when the willow bends with the currents and it is actually refreshed from the storm instead of being broken and in threat of demise. To compromise from a wholly correct position would be equally wrong. You can only dilute the truth in that situation, and that is flat out wrong.

But in the case of a flexible condition, like whether we would have been dealt this PD path or any another (like cancer or leukemia for example), there is not an absolute attitude we are required to exhibit.

It just boils down to how handle it. You can make your own dealt path that much more miserable or you can roll with it.

Tank traps off the coast of WWI and WWII shores were first designed as large shapes similar to a child's jack (from the game played with a bouncing ball and ‘jacks’) that were seated in concrete, immovable, to stop the tanks being deployed on the shores. However, it was found that if the iron ‘jack’ was just dropped in the breakwater, that it would roll in and out with the tide, constantly changing position, and be ultimately more effective. We need to be flexible like the willow and yet movable like the tank trap. Then, and only then, can we be in a frame of mind to accept our condition but still be resolute enough to fight the condition and not let it mentally overpower us.

I’ll get off my soap box now; this is probably more than you wanted to know about my personal philosophy. Take care all. Torqued but realistic...

Earl Love

Posted by Earl Love on December 29, 2009

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