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Keeping Katherine: A Mother's Journey to Acceptance

Authors: Zimmermann, Susan
Publisher: Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony/Rodale, Harmony/Rodale, Harmony Rodale
BISAC/Subject: BIO026000, FAM012000, BIO033000
ISBN: 9780307421173, Related ISBNs: 0307421171, 1400052017, 9780307421173, 9781400052011
Classification: Non-Fiction
Number of pages: 240,
Audience: General/trade
Synopsis: Katherine was a beautiful, perfect baby for the first year of her life. Then, without warning, she changed forever. She started crossing her eyes. She cried at night for hours at a time and could not be soothed. She stopped saying words, stopped crawling, and began what would become a lifelong habit of wringing her hands. Hospital visits and consultations with doctors offered no answers to the mystery. Soon Katherine slipped away to a place her mother and father could never reach.

In Keeping Katherine, Susan Zimmermann tells the story of her life with her daughter Katherine, who has Rett syndrome, a devastating neurological disorder. Writing with honesty and candor, Zimmermann chronicles her personal journey to accept the changed dynamic of her family; the strain of caring for a special needs child and the pressure it placed on her marriage, career, and relationship with her parents; the dilemma of whether Kat would be better cared for in a group home; and most important, the altered reality of her daughter’s future. A story of personal transformation that reminds us that it isn’t what happens to us that shapes our humanity, but how we react, Keeping Katherine shows the unconditional love that exists in families and the gifts the profoundly disabled can offer to those who try to understand them.
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