With Angel’s Wings invites a reader to share in a mother’s journey. Twenty-five-year-old Laura resides in Littleton, New Hampshire with her three-year-old daughter, Emily. Her husband, Kevin, a marine, has been called out to sea for six months. Laura has just given birth to her second daughter, Hannah.
“Uh-oh. We’ve got a problem here. I’m hearing a significant murmur.” Just thirteen days after giving birth, Laura’s life was changed forever by those words from the pediatrician.
This is the raw and honest recount of Laura’s unexpected journey into the world of parenting two special-needs daughters. It is 100% true; only names were changed. It includes heart wrenching diagnoses (from a rare genetic disorder to autism), dances on the edge of sanity, and a completely unexpected – albeit somewhat unconventional – love story.
Wow. And it’s all true?
I have been told that changing names technically makes With Angel’s Wings a work of fiction, but beyond names, I was brutally honest in the recounting of my story (including “real-life” pictures that correlate with each of the chapters – found on the book’s website), so I consider it a memoir.
Your story? Wait – are you Laura?
Laura is me, one hundred percent. This is my story, told with my heart totally on my sleeve.
That makes it feel even more real to us.
Tell us about “Laura”.
Laura had a moderately chaotic upbringing (divorced parents, some abuse, frequent moves, time spent “fostered out” to her aunt and uncle, etc.). She was married too young and for all the wrong reasons, but she struggled to make the marriage work, even if just for the benefit of her children. The events chronicled in With Angel’s Wings act as “trial-by-fire” lessons, teaching Laura about strength, bravery, faith and love.
Have you written any other books?
No. This is the only book I had in me. I have an epilogue on the book’s website, and I am more than happy to answer any and all questions posed (I’m clearly not a private person), but I believe With Angel’s Wings will be my only book.
We feel that it was important that you wrote it, though.
With Angel’s Wings was published as an offer of hope to families facing similar challenges, but it has been thoroughly enjoyed by both parents of typical children and non-parents, as well. The honesty appeals to anyone curious about how someone might react to such challenges. With Angel’s Wings has also been very helpful to individuals entering professions such as pediatric nursing, special education, and occupational and physical therapy, due to it’s very useful insight to the “plight of the parent”.
You mentioned a website and we forgot to ask where we can find it.
Feel free to visit www.withangelswings.net anytime!
Do you do social media?
My personal Facebook page is: https://www.facebook.com/#!/catnsarah.
The book’s Facebook page is: https://www.facebook.com/#!/withangelswings.
While I’m struggling to become more “Twitter-literate”, I do have a Twitter handle (is that the right term?). It’s @W_Angels_Wings.
Why is the book called With Angel’s Wings, by the way?
Thank you so much for asking! “With angel’s wings” is a quote from the book, describing a stuffed cow angel that was purchased, in part, to “honor” time spent in the “Cow Room”. Curious? Happy reading!
Let’s put the Laura persona to one side; tell us about Stephanie.
I am a loving wife and mother of four. Three of my four children have special needs (Autism, Wolf-Hirschorn Syndrome, and ADHD/Dyslexia – my youngest is my “typical kid”…with the exception, perhaps, of a bit of a princess complex). I mention my kids and their diagnoses only because caring for them defines much of who I am. I was a nurse on the medical unit of Seattle Children’s Hospital for about 10 years, but I am back home with the kids, as things got too busy at home to allow time for a career.
Wife, mother, and nurse are not all of me, though. A few years ago I was rather shocked to find out I have a bit of athlete in me! I enjoy running (I’ve done a triathalon sprint and 2 half-marathons, but 7-mile runs are my comfort zone, so that’s what I do around the neighborhood), and I am a confirmed Zumba-addict. That’s a good thing, though, because it helps to make up for all the time I spend sitting with my nose stuck in a book.
Since you’re not writing any more books, what’s next for you?
I continue to reach out to families of special needs children, professionals who work with special needs children, and anyone else interested in hearing “unedited” views and accounts of life with special needs children. Other than that, I continue my own journey.