It’s A New Life – Mom is Gone – A Memoir about Living Independently with Severe Cerebral Palsy
By: Steven B. Salmon
Robert D. Reed Publishers, P. O. Box 1992, Bandon, Oregon, 97411, 9781944297152, $ 12.95, 2017, 154 Pages
Reviewed by Richard R. Blake,
A Candid Message of Living with the Difficulties of Severe Cerebral Palsy
“It’s A New Life – Mom is Gone – A Memoir about Living Independently with Severe Cerebral Palsy” is Steven D. Salmon’s story. This is an amazing Story of the aspirations, determination, dedication, and diligence that have motivated Steven in his passion to become a recognized, successful, and accomplished author. Steven shares his story of overcoming challenges to write about the physically disabled. He serves as a voice and advocate for the many who do not have a voice that is being heard
Steven’s mother dedicated her life to help him succeed. Steven has a Bachelor of Science degree in English with a writing minor from the University of Wisconsin- Stevens point and a Liberal Arts degree from Madison College. All these years his mother served as his primary care giver, so he could go on to pursue a writing career
When his mother could no longer meet all of Steve’s physical needs, health attendants were hired to become a care team. Things dramatically changed the day his mother fell several times. Steven alerted the family with a call for help. When help arrived his Mom was taken to the Emergency Hospital, she never returned home. She died of a cardiac arrest.
The realization that “Mom is Gone” thrust Steven into a new stage in his story. He now had to face the challenge of living independently with severe cerebral palsy.
I found it hard to put Steven’s book down. There were other times when he was so gut wrenching honest it was hard to go on reading. I felt uncomfortable. As I continued to read Steven’s story, I begin to see life through a new set of eyes. I felt ashamed and embarrassed for living in an uncomfortable vacuum of hypocritical empathy, without recognizing the dignity or character of the individual in a wheel chair, quietly seeking acknowledgement, affirmation, or maybe even an act of friendship.
Steven has ignited a new flame and refueled my passion to write with the reminder to: Believe in yourself, be patient, never give up. He encourages us to exchange our fears, failures, and impatience for hopes and dreams of success. This is the advice and encouragement he received from his friends, and now passes along to his readers.
I am left with an indelible picture of Steven at his computer, in four hour blocks of time, using a Morse code word choice program. Since he cannot use his hands, he uses his head to tap out his words.
“It’s A New Life – Mom is Gone” is a gripping story of the severe physical limitations, the pain of loneliness, of feeling being lost, scared, and tired; all while in the pursuit of bringing an influential message of hope to a unique people who have been looked upon as unemployable, who are relegated to become wards of the state living in group houses, highly medicated, forgotten victims of the “system.”
A complimentary copy of this book was provided for review purposes. The opinions expressed are my own.