Aidan's Way: The Story of a Boy's Life and a Father's Journey

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Sourcebooks, Inc., May 1, 2004 - Family & Relationships - 277 pages
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This life we're given comes in its own season and then follows its vanishing away. If you're at ease in your season, if you can dwell in its vanishing, joy and sorrow never touch you. This is what the ancients called getting free.
--Chuang Tzu

"Aidan's crisis had liberated me in a way. We had come close to death, had looked over the edge of the precipice, and then moved back. He would die at some point, perhaps young, maybe very young.He was profoundly disabled, even more so than he had been before. But his near-death had altered my vision. The length of his life or the physical particulars of his life were not as important as the mere fact of his life itself. He was following along in his own season, moving on the currents of the Way....

I could feel myself starting to get free."
--from Aidan's Way

Sam Crane was unprepared to be the father of Aidan, a boy who would never walk, talk or see. Aidan's Way is an endlessly inspiring account of parental love and devotion, of the lessons of ancient eastern philosophy and of what it means, ultimately, to be human.

"Aidan's Way is the rare personal account that should resonate with any reader....By telling his story simply, beautifully and bravely, Crane challenges us to question the criteria by which we judge everything in this world."-Chicago Tribune

"One of the rare stories about family tragedy: both remarkably perceptive and lacking in self-pity."-Kirkus Reviews
 

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AIDANS WAY

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This is not the first book by a scholar-father to ponder what it means to raise a special-needs child in an unforgiving world. In Life as We Know It, Michael Berube also asks troubling questions ... Read full review

Contents

Prologue
1
Difficulty at the Beginning
5
The Abyss
31
The Knowing Are Never Learned
58
Moving as One and the Same
85
Being the Child
118
The Human Realm
143
The Form of this Body
170
The Farther You Go the Less You Know
201
Mastering Uselessness
236
Bibliographic Note
272
Acknowledgments
276
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About the author (2004)

Sam Crane is Chair of the Department of Asian Studies at Williams College. He has written scholarly books and articles, as well as numerous articles in the popular press, such as the New York Times and Salon.com on his son Aidan. He lives in Williamstown, Massachusetts.

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