Reinventing Emma | Paperback

Rated 5.00 out of 5 based on 14 customer ratings
(14 customer reviews)

$29.99

At just 24, Emma Gee’s future stretches before her invitingly. She was an occupational therapist, an avid runner and had just climbed Borneo’s Mt Kinabalu with a group of friends. But months later she was suddenly a stroke victim, unable to move, speak or swallow and dependent on the medical system she had worked within.

Emma’s story begins with a mystery, first developing disturbing symptoms, then becomes a tragedy when, during a difficult brain operation, she suffers a debilitating stroke and is left in a coma. Nine days later she wakes and must slowly come to terms with the fact that her future has changed forever.

Tenaciously, Emma works her way back to walking and talking again. As a former health professional she has a rare insight into life as a patient, and emerges with a very different perspective on person-centred care and what it takes to live with resilience.

Emma’s story shows how, with love, support and a positive mindset, a life can still be incredible, even though not to the plan previously envisaged, and entailing a daily battle with poor vision, balance and mobility. Emma is now a loving auntie to a brood of nieces and nephews and has an amazing support network. Working as an inspirational speaker she is determined to benefit others by drawing on her own experience and deeper insights.

Writing a diary before, after and, as much as was possible, during the ordeal, Emma has woven her observations and memories into a book. She has a sharp eye for detail and a sense of humour that, understandably, becomes quite black at times. This is not only the story of a young stroke survivor, but also a valuable observational memoir for health professionals, written by one of their own who has travelled to ‘the other side’.

Want to order more than 10 copies? Get in touch.

Description

At just 24, Emma Gee’s future stretches before her invitingly. She was an occupational therapist, an avid runner and had just climbed Borneo’s Mt Kinabalu with a group of friends. But months later she was suddenly a stroke victim, unable to move, speak or swallow and dependent on the medical system she had worked within.

Emma’s story begins with a mystery, first developing disturbing symptoms, then becomes a tragedy when, during a difficult brain operation, she suffers a debilitating stroke and is left in a coma. Nine days later she wakes and must slowly come to terms with the fact that her future has changed forever.

Tenaciously, Emma works her way back to walking and talking again. As a former health professional she has a rare insight into life as a patient, and emerges with a very different perspective on person-centred care and what it takes to live with resilience.

Emma’s story shows how, with love, support and a positive mindset, a life can still be incredible, even though not to the plan previously envisaged, and entailing a daily battle with poor vision, balance and mobility. Emma is now a loving auntie to a brood of nieces and nephews and has an amazing support network. Working as an inspirational speaker she is determined to benefit others by drawing on her own experience and deeper insights.

Writing a diary before, after and, as much as was possible, during the ordeal, Emma has woven her observations and memories into a book. She has a sharp eye for detail and a sense of humour that, understandably, becomes quite black at times. This is not only the story of a young stroke survivor, but also a valuable observational memoir for health professionals, written by one of their own who has travelled to ‘the other side’.

Want to order more than 10 copies? Get in touch.

14 reviews for Reinventing Emma | Paperback

  1. Rated 5 out of 5

    Carole

    I read ‘Reinventing Emma’ in one sitting.I had met her a couple of times before her stroke and found her a likable young woman but none of us could have known the incredible strength that resided inside her small frame. Her story has put the small trials and tribulations of life in perspective for me, as it will for all who read it. Likable? Amazing more like it!

  2. Rated 5 out of 5

    Lyn Gee

    When our beautiful daughter had a debilitating stroke at just 24 we thought we had lost her. Thankfully she survived. But the grief, helplessness and devastation that we felt was immense and is, in fact, ongoing. Such journeys are harrowing for any carer but we are in awe of the way she has guided us along the way, reinvented herself and found purpose and meaning through her disability. Her story not only details her own survival, but shows how grueling the process is for all those who support her. Em’s book, like her life, is just plain inspirational.
    LYN GEE
    Emma’s Mother & Carer.

  3. Rated 5 out of 5

    Fairlie

    I couldn’t put this book down. Such a well written story about an absolutely amazing young lady and the awfully unfair journey. Her ability to see the positive and come out better than ever is inspiring. Thank you Emma for sharing your story.

  4. Rated 5 out of 5

    Paddy Spruce

    What a wonderful book! If you find yourself complaining about life’s foibles, coughs, colds, traffic tickets, waiting in queues or the weather, read this book. Some books are for entertainment, education or filling in time. This book is life changing. Emma’s story is one of courage, acceptance, compassion and resilience. With the love and support of her wonderful family, Emma takes you on a journey from great expectations and prospects to sudden and painful loss and back to a bright future. An extraordinary book written with candour, humour and hope. This book will change your attitude to misfortune and complaining and affirm your belief in the power of optimism, gratitude and the love of a close family.

  5. Rated 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    Reinventing Emma was so hard to put down. The book provided amazing insight into the experience of stroke. As a new graduate occupational therapist I found it really helpful to guide my thinking about helpful ways to work with stroke survivors. I’ve even lent my book to a client who recently had a stroke and she’s loving it too!

  6. Rated 5 out of 5

    Kathy Stuart

    I read Reinventing Emma after being given it via a family connection. I am a registered nurse working in aged care but the insight in this book I feel is a must read for all carers. Thank you Emma for your inspiration and honesty. To all the above comments I say “ditto”.

  7. Rated 5 out of 5

    Donna

    I have known Emma since we both started studying Occupational Therapy together in 2000. Since that time I have come to know and love a generous, loving, happy, spirited, brave, strong, focused, energetic, lovable, and at times a little crazy, Emma. I am so proud to call her my friend. However in all of those years of knowing Em there was one thing that I didn’t know. And that is that she is one amazing author!
    This book is for everyone, it doesn’t matter if you know Em as a friend, a colleague, an acquaintance, by word of mouth, or if you’ve never even met Emma, this is a fabulous book, an incredible story and a must read for everybody!

  8. Rated 5 out of 5

    Emily Kelly (verified owner)

    Hi Emma. I recently read your book and I just wanted to say a huge thank you for putting your Experiences on paper. I’m a speech pathologist and reading your book has honestly changed the way I interact with my clients . It’s made me a better therapist without a doubt. The way you wrote was so honest and heartwarming. I’d love to come to one of your talks one day so I can continue to be inspired to be better therapist. Thank you so much x

  9. Rated 5 out of 5

    Jan Soemartopo

    Dear Emma,

    I just wanted to tell you I have just finished reading your book and I really liked it and found it very helpful.

    I think to change someone’s attitude is very hard and I think you have made a fine achievement.

    I found your book very honest and an inspiration, and it helped me a lot. And I might read it again.

    It was very practical as well as inspiring :

    1. Setting goals – what I can do and what I can’t do. I think you turned a corner when you could communicate on the computer. And so I am learning now to write on the computer. I have got a long way to go yet. But at least you’ve given me a plan for the future.

    2. I found the chapter on dependence and independence very good, and the last chapters of the book were very helpful.

    Thank you for writing the book. I’m very sorry what happened to you. I didn’t realise you had to work so hard.

  10. Rated 5 out of 5

    Brenda Booth (verified owner)

    Emma’s book is a powerful and frank insight into her roller coaster journey, her struggles and her emotions. Emma’s story is one that will help other stroke survivors and their carers, and also provide health professionals with a new perspective on patient centred care and stroke rehabilitation”.

  11. Rated 5 out of 5

    Robyn T

    Hi Emma

    You probably won’t remember me however I met you earlier in the year … Since meeting you, I have been receiving your email updates and bought your book when it was released. I have only just recently had some holidays where I had the chance to sit and read your incredible story. Your book was both very moving and also very inspiring Your determination and resilience and your outlook on life is something that so many people could learn from.

    In reading your story as a health care worker it has made me think more about the needs of my patients, especially those with a disability and how I may be able to make their experience better in some way.

    As a mother of 2 girls aged in their 20’s I have shared your story and in particular your message that “it’s not what happens to you that matters it’s how you choose to deal with it” as in life this message can be useful for everyone.

    I wanted to thank you for sharing your story and congratulate you on writing a wonderful book that was a pleasure to read. I am so glad you came to our clinic on a day when I was working there and that I had the good fortune to meet you. You are truly an inspiration.

  12. Rated 5 out of 5

    Katrina (verified owner)

    Hi Emma,

    I have just finished reading your book this afternoon and I wanted to thank you for sharing your story. I am a fellow stroke survivor and reading your book over the last few months has given me the opportunity to examine life from a new perspective.

    One thing that really spoke to me was the idea of reinventing yourself, and your story has made me realise that I have been fighting to be the “old me” for the past three and a half years and that this has taken a lot of my time and energy. I have recently made the decision to leave the security of my full-time job as a high school teacher and try something different. So many times there has been huge frustration in my job, both with my colleagues and students who can’t see my invisible disability and from myself when I can’t keep up with the pace of teaching in 21st Century. Reading your book I had many “aha!” moments, realising that there are things that I am doing that are negatively impacting my recovery and in fact I have taken several giant leaps backwards. I’ve had to start doing things differently, accepting help from my family and friends and not getting angry because I can’t do it all myself.

    Your book is so well written, you have been able to express what it feels like in a way that allows others to understand too. I have my family and friends lined up to read it; they, like many others, want to understand but some of us simply don’t have the words to express it. Once again, thank you so much for sharing your story.

    I am hoping my new found freedom will allow me time in the coming months to help advocate for young survivors, and find my niche in life.

    Thank you again,
    Katrina

  13. Rated 5 out of 5

    admin

    To all OT/ Health Professionals out there I highly recommend reading this book! It’s about an OT who had a stroke at the age of 24. At times I had tears reading it but overall I have been inspired!

  14. Rated 5 out of 5

    Jo (verified owner)

    Hullo Emma

    I have just read your book and have to let you know what a profound effect it has had on me.

    Thank you from the bottom of my heart for sharing your story with me. You want to rehabilitate people and I am sure if you had been a mere OT you would have helped a lot of people BUT where you are now you are able to rehabilitate many many more countless people just through your story.

    I am a 75 yr old who has had depression for the last 30 years. But reading your book has altered my thinking in such a way that I am now experiencing happy moods. How you have done this is nothing short of miraculous. I thank you so much.

    Every best wish for your future. You are a true healer.

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