Saturday, September 17, 2011
A Challenged Life:
Raising a Child with Special Needs
By Danielle Zimmerman
In a heartening book based on her personal experience raising a child with global development delays, devoted mother and debut author provides inspirational and enlightening guidance for parents and professionals caring for special needs children.
Today, one in five households with children in the United States includes at least one child with special health care needs. In fact, nearly 20% of all children in the US under the age of eighteen have special health care needs. However, despite such staggering statistics, parents, family members, friends, and even specialists oftentimes fail to fully comprehend what the future holds when they realize their child is not developing typically and questions quickly arise regarding what steps to take, how to cope, and especially how each life will be affected. In an honest and reflective account of her experiences raising a daughter with global development delays, Danielle Zimmerman reveals the life altering impact that her daughter’s diagnosis has had on her family, as well as their careers, finances, and relationships. Danielle Zimmerman’s brave writing in A Challenged Life: Raising a Child with Special Needs not only give readers an inspiring look into the world of parents of special needs children, but also provide indispensable advice for families embarking on a similar journey.
When Danielle Zimmerman’s daughter, Abigail, was eight months old, doctors not only diagnosed her with global development delays, but also put a ceiling on her entire future. However, as a result of successful strategies that she and her husband implemented, combined with their continuous love and support, Abigail’s development has been phenomenal. Through an intimate account of the emotional journey from the time Abigail was diagnosed up until the present-day, Danielle describes how she and her husband have learned to deal with some of the more recurrent challenges associated with raising a special needs child, such as doctor’s visits, marital intimacy, finances, and education. Having experienced first-hand the joys and pains associated with raising a special needs child, Danielle’s advice in both compassionate and practical. Furthermore, by addressing such real and personal issues, readers will walk away laughing, crying, and with a better understanding of how to cope with a child with special needs.
Through her role as an experienced mother of a special needs child, Danielle Zimmerman hopes her heartfelt words illustrate that even though a diagnosis helps with medical services and insurance payments, it should not mark the end of a parent’s hopes and dreams for their child. While A Challenged Life serves as a vivid depiction of the daily social, financial, and marital challenges associated with raising a special needs child, it is most of all a testimony to a mother’s unconditional love and the power of the human spirit when faced with uncertainty.
About the Author: While a pre-med student at Barry University and Nova University, Danielle Zimmerman became certified in early childhood development, as well as a certified EMT. During this time, she also opened B.E.S.M. Inc., a telemarketing company, with her soon to be husband Brett. Today, Zimmerman is the CFO of B.E.S.M. and KB Promotions, a subsequent telemarketing company that she and her husband opened in Tampa in 2007. Moreover, she is the Founder and current Treasurer of Abi’s Place, a non-profit private school in Coral Springs for children with moderate to severe disabilities. Danielle Zimmerman currently lives in Coral Springs, Florida with her husband and their two children, Abigail and Ethan. A Challenged Life: Raising a Child with Special Needs by Danielle Zimmerman (published by B.E.S.M. Inc., RRP $14.95) is available from Amazon http://www.amazon.com/ and can be ordered from all good bookstores.