Welcome back to another day here at Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.
Today, we're shining the light on a recent release that's sure to inspire many and touch hearts round the world. It came to my attention thanks to Wunderkind PR and stars a family with the cards stacked against them, yet a spirit to rise above it all.
A Mother’s Tale of Brotherly Love, Faith & the Race That Changed a Family’s Life
with Bob Der
Foreword by LeBron James
About the book...
In 2012, Jenny’s two sons, Conner, 9 at the time, and Cayden, 7, who has spastic cerebral palsy, were named Sports IllustratedKids SportsKids of the Year after completing 14 triathlons, including two IronKids triathlons. Their story inspired children and athletes across the country, but their family story began long before crossing the finish line.
At 12 years old, Jenny lost her mother to cancer. Still in mourning, she was sent to live with her estranged father. Jenny quickly became a rebellious teen, dropped out of high school and fell in love with a felon. When Jenny finds out she’s pregnant, she promises to make a better life for her and her child, Conner. “Inspiring! They are a championship family.” —Mike Krzyzewski (Coach K) an imprint of Time Inc. Books
A couple of years later and after leaving her abusive first husband, Jenny has another boy, Cayden. Jennydreamed of her boys sharing hobbies and playing sports together, but those dreams were shattered when she found out that Cayden had cerebral palsy. But Cayden’s disability did not deter Conner from finding a way to bond and play with his brother, and through the Long Brothers’ very first triathlon, Conner and Cayden fulfilled their mother’s dream while also providing inspiration for those with disabilities, their caretakers, and anyone looking for a miracle.
Inspirational and touching, Jenny Long’s story evokes feelings of hope and redemption against all odds.
Sounds like an incredible story, no?
Nothing would keep this little boy down nor his brother and from their resilience, their inability to accept "no this can't be done" as a final answer, their story was born. Let's dig a little bit more behind the story as we sit in on a Q&A with Jenny Long....
What inspired you to put your life experiences into a memoir? Were you tempted to censor yourself and not share a particular story or detail with the world?
I was inspired to share my story with the world. I have never been afraid to air my dirty laundry because we all have it, some people just wash theirs better than others. I believe we are all out there trying our hardest to make the best choices in our lives. There is no such thing as telling someone you’ll never make a mistake because it happens. It's how you stand up and take off again and the lesson you learned from it that matters. I want people to see that we all have miracles in our lives even when it seems like it's all bad. I want people to not give up when they feel it's the only option because it's not. I am not saying I am the only one that's had bad things happen to them, but a platform was laid out for me and I want to be someone that can help others.
Your sons have inspired many people with their strength and courage. What have you they taught you about life?
My boys have taught me so many things about life. How to love beyond faults and differences, how life is about the journey not the destination. I have learned to embrace the small things and not sweat too much in life. Watching them race gets me every time. Watching them get passed up by others but still have determination and guts to finish no matter what place makes me proud.
Was writing Expect a Miracle difficult for you in any way?
Yes, writing this book was very hard! It's hard to read the story of your life and dig deep into the past. There were a lot of dark moments in my journey and no one likes to go back. We are supposed to focus on pressing forward. So goi
Despite what Cayden’s doctor predicted about his future, you never lost hope for your son. What advice can you give to parents who are raising a child with cerebral palsy?
It is a journey well worth traveling. It might not be what you had planned but I promise you will be blessed with so many more things you will learn in life. Your child will teach you what true love is. Stay connected with other parents with children who have special needs. Whether a community or internet groups, you will learn a lot from other parents that understand. And always remember it's okay to go to the dark side with your feelings and emotions, just never be afraid to ask for help. And last but not least take care of you too.
What do you hope readers will take away from Expect a Miracle?
I want readers to gain hope in whatever they are facing in their life. Maybe they will take a more in depth look at their own life to find their own miracle around them.
About the authors...
|Author photo, credit Freddy Brown|
JENNY LONG is the mother of Conner, 12, and Cayden Long, 10, who have completed in triathlons together as Team Long Brothers since 2011. Conner saw it a way for him to connect with Cayden, who suffers from Spastic Cerebral Palsy and they have competed in multiple triathlons and IronKids Triathlons. In 2012, the brothers were awarded the National Consortium for Academics and Sports (NCAS) Hero Among Us Award. EXPECT A MIRACLE: A Mother’s Tale of Brotherly Love, Faith and the Race That Changed a Family’s Life is Jenny’s first book.
BOB DER is Managing Director of 10Ten Media and the former Managing Editor and Publisher of Sports Illustrated Kids. He lives in West Orange, New Jersey, with his wife Liz and two sons, James and Connor.
Special thanks to Danielle at Wunderkind PR for the heads up about this title as well as the chance to share it with all of you. (THANKS!) For more information on this incredible work, feel free to click through the links provided above. This title is available now via Liberty Street, an imprint of Time Inc. Books, so be on the lookout for it on a bookstore shelf or virtual retailer of your choosing.
Until next time...happy reading!