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A Normal Life: A Sister's Odyssey Through Brain Injury Paperback – December 16, 2013
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About the Author
Lyrysa Smith has been a writer and journalist for more than 25 years in print, radio, and documentary television. Most recently, she worked as a staff writer with the Albany Times Union newspaper, specializing in writing profiles of local people doing remarkable things and articles about health, science, social issues, workplace, and consumer topics. She has also written scripts and produced documentaries for network, cable, and public television and worked as a reporter for a national newspaper in Zimbabwe while living there with a grant for journalists awarded from Rotary International. She received New York Press Association In-Depth Reporting awards for a newspaper series about people living with HIV/AIDS in rural upstate New York, and for a group project about underage alcohol use. She has won several Hearst newspapers awards for features stories on topics ranging from elder care to stem cell research. Lyrysa Smith is a graduate of Stanford University in English and Creative Writing, and completed literature, writing, journalism, political science, and history courses at Stanford-in-Britain in London and at the University of Zimbabwe.
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Top customer reviews
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First, and most obviously, this book will be highly relevant to anyone who is dealing with serious brain injury on a personal level. It provides a detailed understanding of the nature of this malady, the treatments, the range of prognosis, the complexity of dealing with medical providers, and the emotional roller coaster of having someone you care about become essentially a different person if and when they recover.
Secondly, it is a strong advocacy piece about the ease and dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning. [I went out and bought CO detectors shortly after starting the book.] It is worth reading for this educational and motivation aspect alone.
Mostly, however, this is a book about family, love, acceptance and persistence. The Smiths are an extraordinary group of very talented, charismatic, and focused people. The most compelling part of this story is how they deal together with a set of circumstances that is incredibly demanding. The narrative is painfully honest and disclosing. The interactions amongst the family are often complicated and challenging. Molly, the subject of the book, is quite amazing post-recovery ...beautiful, fit, funny, motivated ...and sometimes quite difficult. Molly's family, especially her mother, are aspirational in their response to her.
This is a great read. It is well-written, poignant, and inspirational. You don't want to miss it.
Everyone is silently asking themselves, “Is living is always the best answer?”
The old Molly and the new Molly…she is still a sister, a daughter, a friend, and she is still family and you don’t give up on family. The journey is true inspiration and shows how a family can bond over the small glimmers of hope and persevere through the drops and keep on going…and that’s love at the highest degree.
Please share this story and if you don’t have a Carbon Monoxide detector in your home please phone your local fire department because many will come to your home and install one for free; and if they don’t please go and buy one and install it today.
God bless the Angels of family.