A Gift of Grace: A Mother's Journey Through Her Son's Schizophrenia

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9781456885625: A Gift of Grace: A Mother's Journey Through Her Son's Schizophrenia

Imagine this: There's a family of three beautiful, gifted children, enjoying life to its fullest. Suddenly... paranoid schizophrenia: a mental disorder characterized by an inability to separate real from unreal experiences... slowly takes residence and shatters the home. Years of darkness descend, bringing torrential pain and anguish. The family struggles to convince son and brother to take prescription meds, not the street drugs. He complies haphazardly, continually being led by his voices, making a plethora of dark choices. Personal inner strength battles for him. The love of family catapult him, time after time, after time... into the light... until... with the passage of seasons, his spirit is uplifted! He seizes control of his own destiny and today... Edward Kenneth Weatherly confronts the challenge of building a healthy life, multi-tasking the strife of mental illness, addictions and his true heart's desire to use his gifts and live out loud! A Gift of Grace: A Mother's Journey Through Her Son's Schizophrenia will boost optimism and support for people affected by mental illness and/or addictions, share pain and triumph with parents, while enlightening other readers with insight and comfort as they grapple with their own set of challenges.

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About the Author:

Beatrice Weatherly is a gifted educator and a courageous woman with a message of "you can achieve anything if you truly believe." This is a message her parents taught her and her five siblings during an amazing childhood growing up "in the house in the coulee" just south of Hughenden, Alberta, Canada. She models the unconditional love and acceptance she learned from her mother and challenges others to dream big just as her father inspired her to do. Bea realized her dream of becoming a teacher when she graduated from the University of Alberta with a Bachelor of Education degree and began teaching in the Provost area. Reflecting her parent's positive outlook, she encouraged her students to be all they could be. Shortly after she started teaching, Bea married and soon had her own three children to guide toward setting their sights high and dedicating themselves to reach their lofty goals. This teacher and principal made a significant difference to her students' lives and education, as well as being an amazing mother to Nicole, Shelley and Edward. Slowly cracks began breaking through the idyllic life. Bea became stronger through resolving many challenges, such as recovering from breast cancer, leaving unhealthy relationships, striking out on her own, embracing the coming out of her son and one daughter, all the while experiencing the roller coaster ride of her son's struggle with paranoid schizophrenia complicated by addictions. What she learned during this time, she incorporates in her book, A Gift of Grace: A Mother's Journey Through Her Son's Schizophrenia. As a mental health advocate, her goal is to remove the stigma of mental illness, addictions, homosexuality and homelessness to create a world of peace. Retired from teaching elementary school students, Bea Weatherly retains the passion for education, which she now does through writing, speaking and life-coaching. Meanwhile, she and two of her children, Nicole and Edward, formed a company called IDEGO Multimedia whose mission is to raise awareness and understanding of diverse social issues within the context of art.

Review:

Title: A Gift of Grace illuminates schizophrenia's impact on families Subtitle: Calgary author Bea Weatherly courageously describes coming to terms with her son's debilitating mental illness and addictions In a Gift of Grace (Upside Publishing and Productions, 2008), author Bea Weatherly shows her courage in revealing a secret that most would hide in shame. The Calgary author, who raised her family in a small Alberta town, is the mother of a son with schizophrenia who spent years coming to terms with the disorder and liberating herself from its stigma. Covering a period of 28 years, the author tells of her journey with her son as a child and as an adult. The book reads like a journal, and covers her family history chronologically. At the start of her journey, Weatherly was a public school teacher raising three children together with her husband in small town Alberta. She had expectations of an ordinary life for her and her family. As time unfolds, Weatherly's idyllic life is turned upside down, as her son, Edward, battles both schizophrenia and substance abuse. A gifted musician and artist, Edward first attempted to manage the debilitating symptoms with street drugs. His strange behavious became apparent to Weatherly and her family, who sought professional help. But like many people with mental illness, he initially struggled to accept the diagnosis of schizophrenia and became non-compliant with his prescription medication. Despite the family's efforts, they couldn't convince him to take prescription medication, not the street drugs, and Edward ultimately became homeless, which isn't unusual for those with untreated mental illnesses. The impact of Edward's disorder was not only painful for him, but also for his mother. As a caring, loving and devoted mom, Bea tells of her tribulations in this beautifully written work. What is so remarkable about Bea is her strength in withstanding the ordeals of her son's illness. Though the book isn't written for public commendation, she deserves the admiration of the reader in learning to live gracefully and patiently with her son's disorder and fully accepting his mental condition. After decades-long roller coaster ride, Edward has recovered from the torments of schizophrenia with the love and support of his family. Today, he is pursuing a happy and healthy life and has seized control of his own destiny. However, like so many, he is still challenged by his incurable and treatable medical condition, but manages it well. For families coming to terms with a loved one's schizophrenia, A Gift of Grace offers hope. For those who haven't been touched by this often-mystifying disorder, the book gently explains one of the most stigmatized mental illnesses. This compelling and compassionate read is also an optimism-booster for those who're recovering from mental illness and/or addictions. By Jamal Ali, a writer and mental health advocate residing in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. His articles have been published in Schizophrenia Digest, Alexandra Musings, The Calgary Herald and other publications. --The Post: A Publication of the Parkland Institude; Volume XIV, #2, Spring/Summer 2009

Title: Courage to Reveal Secrets so Deep Most Hide in Shame When Bea Weatherly was born and grew up in "the little house in the coulee" in small Alberta, she expected her life would be much like her parents. Finish high school, fall in love, get married, raise children in a loving happy home - most of all that her children would turn out like her and her five siblings. Normal! So dreams don't always turn out exactly how we picture them. Perhaps not even a dream, just an expectation of an ordinary life was what Bea thought was her road ahead. Her Dad always told her to dream big and "Bea, you should write a book". She had no idea what to write about in such an ordinary life. She became a teacher like her mother and her older sister. That was an unspoken expectation too. Because Mom and Big Shari-Lee, as her younger sisters called her, both were teachers, she and her younger sister believed it was expected they become teachers too and they did. Her three brothers all worked in oil and gas technology just as their father did. Bea married and had three children, just as expected. When exactly her life went off track, she is not really certain. It just came upon her gradually until wham! Some life-changing events derailed the anticipated path and created secrets most of us would regard as shameful. Yet when called courageous, this author, businesswoman, speaker and mother of three, doesn't really see it that way. "Secrets kill, truth liberates", she says, "When you share your burdens, everyone is empowered." It is not that this was part of her upbringing either. The family she came from was loving and happy, but proud. Maybe proud is not the right word according to Bea. Yet, it was sort of protective pride. Circles the wagons pride. They were close-mouthed, private people. What happened at home stayed at home. What a different route Bea has found! One that is open, public and proud - rightfully so - proud for the obstacles she and her children have overcome and what they all realize should be shared so others can learn from their journey. That is why Bea Weatherly is proud to write A Gift of Grace: A Mother's Journey Through Her Son's Schizophrenia. She tells this secret openly now. Not surprising that other people who rarely spoke of their family's experience with schizophrenia suddenly tell Bea, "Yes, I know what it is like, my son... my brother... my mother... or... has schizophrenia too." And in sharing there is a sense of relief. A sense of not being alone. Sense that would not be there had Bea not shared her story with them. How her life went from mundane to what she calls "bizarre" cannot be told in a single breath. It started with baby steps, until she realized what her father must have known the future held in store for her. She felt she had a story to tell. She signed up for a writers' retreat. She was the best mom she could be. She modeled respect, love and generosity. She sees that in her children. Even though her son tripped and fell, felt he was broken, he was able to pull himself up and carry on. He started learning all over again that he is worthy of love, to forgive himself, to love himself... Bea taught her children that no matter how many stumbles, they can still stand up and be proud. Proud and open. Proud and healing. Proud in teaching the rest of the world the valuable lessons they have learned. Incredibly proud of their mother for standing tall and saying, "Hello my name is Bea Weatherly. I am a mother, teacher, author. I am here to help you stand proud, no matter what." Article written by Xenia Stanford (President, KnowMap), currently the president and chief executive officer of Stanford Solutions Inc., devoted to empowering others to manage knowledge by using practical tools. --Canadian Entrepreneurial News: Equipping the Uncommon Entrepreneur; spring/summer 2008

I listen to Bea Weatherly speak at a conference in Red Deer in March 2008. Bea's message was heartfelt, knowledgeable, and inspirational. She spoke about courage, her courage in the face of much adversity. Bea's presentation was touching and at the same time humorous. I laughed; I cried; I empathized. Bea is articulate; her speech was organized and logical, easy to follow, yet held incredible depth. There is no mistaking, she is one courageous woman! Now she is sharing her message in a larger way through her book and to a great audience. Anyone anywhere who has a loved one with mental illness, multiple addictions or other challenges needs this book. Anyone anywhere who loves a good human interest story will want this book. --Marlene Nelson, Educator

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Book Description Xlibris Corporation. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Paperback. 274 pages. Dimensions: 9.0in. x 6.0in. x 0.6in.Imagine this: Theres a family of three beautiful, gifted children, enjoying life to its fullest. Suddenly. . . paranoid schizophrenia: a mental disorder characterized by an inability to separate real from unreal experiences. . . slowly takes residence and shatters the home. Years of darkness descend, bringing torrential pain and anguish. The family struggles to convince son and brother to take prescription meds, not the street drugs. He complies haphazardly, continually being led by his voices, making a plethora of dark choices. Personal inner strength battles for him. The love of family catapult him, time after time, after time. . . into the light. . . until. . . with the passage of seasons, his spirit is uplifted! He seizes control of his own destiny and today. . . Edward Kenneth Weatherly confronts the challenge of building a healthy life, multi-tasking the strife of mental illness, addictions and his true hearts desire to use his gifts and live out loud! A Gift of Grace: A Mothers Journey Through Her Sons Schizophrenia will boost optimism and support for people affected by mental illness andor addictions, share pain and triumph with parents, while enlightening other readers with insight and comfort as they grapple with their own set of challenges. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Paperback. Bookseller Inventory # 9781456885625

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