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Bound to Love: a memoir of grit and gratitude Paperback – October 6, 2015
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About the Author
Skye Blaine writes short essays, memoir, fiction, and poetry, developing themes of aging, coming of age, disability, and most of all, the process of unlearning–the heart of the matter. In 2003, she received an MFA in Creative Writing from Antioch University. Her memoir manuscript, now titled Bound to Love, won first prize in the Pacific Northwest Writers Association literary contest in 2005. She has had personal essays published in six anthologies, and in national magazines: “In Context” (now known as “Yes!” magazine) and “Catalyst.” Other personal essays have been published in the “Register-Guard” newspaper, and the “Eugene Weekly.” Skye also presented radio essays on KRML 1410 AM in Carmel, CA.
Top customer reviews
What I wasn't prepared for was the return of memories from over 50 years ago when I was a new, too young mother, married in an inappropriate partnership. My son's seven week early birth, 17-day wait to touch him for the first time, and his subsequent return after ten days for major surgery, all leading to the demise of the marriage due to domestic violence came rushing back to me.
Blaine's kindness to the partners in her life who didn't live up to hopes and expectations and her head-on acceptance of her mistakes and perceived shortcomings are extraordinary, as is her dedication to the son who needs so much.
This heart wrenching tale, with many clues for finding one's way through overwhelming circumstances, is worth the read for its own story and even more so for a new parent facing the pain of having a child whose physical and emotional challenges call for more than the usual grit.
I found powerful, shared ground and new insights through Skye’s vivid depictions of relationships with her son, parents, and three husbands. We witness her son’s pivotal role in shaping, stressing, and strengthening those relationships, and in forcing the author to choose between what is best for her child over a husband’s needs.
Skye shares their rich life on a California commune and how hard it was to leave that supportive community as her son’s, and her own, needs shifted. I was enthralled by the author’s intimate story of giving up smoking pot when her son was a pre-teen. As a fellow mother of a teen son, the chapter unveiling the bullying her son endures almost did me in. The scenes building to a pivotal interaction with her conventional, midwestern father were among my favorites.
This book is also the heart-rending story of Skye’s son’s journey forward—through unimaginable medical and social setbacks—finding friendship in the commune, leaving that security to become the new, disabled boy in a public high school, his hard work to overcome a reading disability, and his brave steps toward independence as a young man.
Through stories intense with personal honesty and vivid writing, Bound to Love, brings us into the heart and soul of a creative and resourceful response to a difficult life. Skye’s well-researched book presents helpful nuggets of medical information without slowing the powerful momentum of the story.
Reading Bound to Love expanded my appreciation of the needs of disabled children and their families. Parents of a child with a disability, or a child who has suffered discrimiation, will especially appreciate this compelling memoir, but the story resonates beyond those boundaries. Despite the barriers and prejudices Skye and her son encounter, and even in the face of a potentially devastating medical revelation near the end of the book, this is an inspiring story of a mother’s compassionate quest to ensure the best outcome for her son.
I was drawn instantly to Thom. Disabled at birth by a congenital heart defect, he shines through with an unbreakable spirit as life deals him one challenge after another. Thom is kind, loving, and wise beyond his years due to his own inner strength and the courage, devotion, and yes, "grit" of his mother.
Skye tells their story with such honesty and precise prose that her words glide you from page to page.
This book will especially touch the hearts of parents, but you don't have to be a parent to appreciate it--you just have to be human.
As a polio survivor, I identified with much of what Thom went through - discrimination, frustration, learning to assist others with how to "be with me" - and was deeply moved over and over again. This is due not only to the poignancy of the story, but his mother's ability to tell it. I was stealing half-hours each day to get back with Skye and Thom and learn how their lives developed.
Not only is this book true, but it is a well-crafted story, a page turner.
Most recent customer reviews
It is written from the heart and soul of a mother who loves and fights for her disabled son, Thom.Read more