Schuyler's Monster A Father's Journey with His Wordless Daughter, by Rummel-Hudson, Robert
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- ISBN: 9780312538804 | 0312538804
- Cover: Paperback
- Copyright: 1/6/2009
When Schuyler Rummel-Hudson was eighteen months old, a question about her lack of speech by her pediatrician set in motion a journey that continues today. When she was diagnosed with bilateral perisylvian polymicrogyria (an extremely rare neurological disorder), her parents were given a name for the monster that had been stalking them from doctor to doctor, and from despair to hope, and back again. Once they knew why Schuyler couldn't speak, they needed to determine how to help her learn. They took on educators and society to give their beautiful daughter a voice, and in the process learned a thing or two about fearlessness, tenacity, and joy. More than a memoir of a parent dealing with his child's disability, Schuyler's Monster is a tale of a little girl who silently teaches a man filled with self-doubt how to be the father she needs. Robert Rummel-Hudson has been writing online since 1995. His work has been recognized by the Diarist Awards at diarist.net, including citations for Best Writing, Best Overall Journal, Best Account of a Public or News Event, Best Dramatic Entry, and the Legacy Hall of Fame Award. He has served three times as a featured panelist at JournalCon, an annual conference for online writers. His online writing has been featured in articles in the Austin Chronicle , the Irish Times and the New Haven Register . Robert and his family currently live in Plano, Texas. When Schuyler was 18 months old, a question about her lack of speech by her pediatrician set in motion a journey that continues today. When she was diagnosed with Bilateral perisylvian polymicrogyria (an extremely rare neurological disorder caused by a malformation of the brain), her parents were given a name for the monster that had been stalking them throughout the search for the correct answer to Schuyler''s mystery. Once they knew why she couldn't speak, they needed to determine how to help her learn. Schuyler's Monster is more than the memoir of a parent dealing with a child's disability. It is the honest, funny, and heart-wrenching story of the relationship between a unique and ethereal little girl and her father who struggles with whether or not he is the right dad for the job. It is the story of a family seeking answers to a child's dilemma, but it is also a chronicle of their unique relationships, formed without traditional language against the expectations of a doubting world. It is the story of a little girl who silently teaches a man filled with self-doubt how to be the father she needs. "A gripping explication, shot through with equal parts horror and hope, of how parenthood can turn ordinary people into passionate advocates."'” Neal Pollack, author of Alternadad "Robert Rummel-Hudson is brave enough to reveal the damage the discovery of his child''s condition did to his marriage and to his own sense of self. He manages to repair some of the damage through close involvement with Schuyler and vigorous campaigning on her behalf. His memoir is honest, often painful and deeply personal."'” Charlotte Moore, author of George & Sam "The book is engaging and honest'”I''m sure it will help many parents who are struggling to find the most loving way to help their children who have 'issues.'"'” Dana Buchman, author of A Special Education "The monster in this heartfelt memoir is polymicrogyria, an extremely rare brain malformation that, in the case of Rummel-Hudson''s daughter Schuyler, has completely impaired her ability to speak. During her first three years, as her parents seek to find out what hidden ''monster'' is causing her wordlessness, they endure ''two years of questions and tests and at least one unsatisfactory diagnosis.'' But while Rummel-Hudson initially rages at God for giving Schuyler ''a life that would never ever be what we''d imagined it to be,'' his depiction of her next four years becomes a study not only in Schuyler''s vivacious and resilient personality, but also in the redeeming power of understanding and a ''stup