The working title -- Identity Theft -- was the brainchild of friends of ours Steve Goodman and Ruth Levine. Over dinner we were talking about the book, and I was describing my frustration with not being able to do all that I used to do. That I no longer saw myself the same way. That I wondered if I am even the same person. Steve said -- It's like your identity was stolen from you. And clearly recognizing the "play" on the more frequent event of a stolen credit card, drivers license or social security number, he suggested Identity Theft. We all liked it immediately.
The subtitle has gone through lots of revisions. We first tried "Recovery, Renewal and Discovery after Stroke". We discussed many more ideas with dozens of friends and colleagues -- hope they don't stop inviting us for dinner!!! But for now, we've settled on "A Journey to Rediscover Ourselves after Stroke".
As I've thought about it, and talked to other survivors, Journey seems to capture so much about our experience. The recovery process isn't linear. There are ups and downs. Highs and Lows. Both physically and emotionally. It really is a journey. Frankly, feels like a Journey that will never end. But isn't that life?
And Rediscover -- I find myself going back and forth between whether, with my more limited physical capabilities and speech difficulties, I am "recreating" myself, or "rediscovering" who I really am -- and always have been. And clarifying who I now want to be. In the end, feels like the right word.
Ourselves. The book isn't just about my journey. It's also the journeys of the dozens of survivors we've interviewed. And I hope it will be a resource for countless other survivors for whom it's useful as they navigate their own journeys. I hope they will know through the title this book is about, and for, them.
Here I am reviewing a draft of the manuscript with my husband, Steve Zuckerman
So what do you think? If you are a survivor, and you've struggled with questions about your own identity, does this title resonate for you? Do you have other ideas? We like what we have, but it's not locked in. Please reply with your comments, observations or suggestions -- about the title or what survivors want to know. Thank you.