Thursday, December 1, 2022

Gabby - A Story of Courage and Hope - Book Review

Those who come to know Gabrielle Giffords are said to become Gabbified. It certainly happened to me and I would be very surprised if you did not experience being taken in by the immensity of her spirit as revealed in Gabby: A Story of Courage and Hope

Giffords, a United States Congresswoman at the time, was the victim of an assassination attempt, and deadly mass shooting, on January 8, 2011. Shot in the head at point-blank range, her chances of surviving were less than one percent. The bullet that traveled through the left hemisphere of her brain should have killed her. Yet, despite the astronomical odds against it, Giffords survived.

This is the true story of an astonishing woman who is the epitome of extreme service, deep humanity, and extraordinary fortitude. Way beyond survival, Gabrielle Giffords, through sheer grit and an unmatched work ethic, demonstrates what it means to live out your life's calling with undying passion, radical optimism, and the kind of genuine care for others that transcends political divisions.

Despite years of a grueling rehabilitation regimen that would likely defeat the toughest among us, Gabrielle has never quit when it comes to taking on the most challenging issues of our times. Her nonprofit Giffords organization has stepped up to address the ongoing rampage of gun violence in our nation. 

I picked up this book, and Giffords' new documentary (Gabby Giffords Won't Back Down), because I have been feeling deeply shaken (horrified) by the escalating anger and violence that is destroying lives and ripping apart the fabric of our world.  I knew that I would draw strength, and a new commitment to doing something of substance, by opening myself up to Gabbification.  

As I have reflected on the impact Gabrielle Giffords has had on her constituents, her community, her family, and on everyone who has crossed her path, the thought crossed my mind that I want to be like Gabby Giffords when I grow up.  Then, I realized that she would most likely want me to be the very epitome of me.  I can't be Gabby, but by following her example, I can use my own inner power and determination to proactively be a force for good in my corner of the world.








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14 comments:

  1. I remember when this happened and how horrifying the event was. I remember the news and how hard Gabby fought to recover. I did not know about her, now, lifelong project of gun violence prevention. I'm right there with her. I agree, Diana. Each of us has the capacity to be a 'force for good' in our little corner of the world.

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  2. I believe Gabby survived because she still has important work to do. I also believe there is a step, an action, we can each take to be a part of solutions (or movement forward).

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  3. I also remember the shooting. The image that stands out in my mind though was when she returned to the House to vote and got a standing ovation from both sides. Clearly, she is a woman whose courage & determination are admired by many.

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    1. Yes... that was such a poignant moment when Gabby entered the chamber to vote and to speak up for the children who were victims of gun violence. It deeply moved me and everyone with their hearts in the right place. Gabby had (and has) vast numbers of supporters pulling for her.

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  4. Both Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly are heroes for our time. Theirs is a love story for the ages, and their courage, grit, decency and humanity are an inspiration to us all. Gabby’’s fierce determination to recover “against all odds” and continue to live a life of meaningful public service in the private sector is awe-inspiring. Thank you for letting me know about this book, which I’m looking forward to reading.

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    1. They are certainly my kind of heroes. Their decency, and integrity, are light-years ahead of the pack. Can you imagine having a buoyant spirit, like Gabby's, after all that she has endured? I stand in awe of those who lead with such humanity. Respect to the max!

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  5. Wow! I remember the headlines at the time and often wondered what had happened to her afterward! Often when these kinds of tragedies happen, you don't hear about the aftermath two or three or mor months down the road. I'm so happy to hear that she has turned her upside down into a positive and moving way to deal with problems today! I think I would really enjoy this book, so thank you for your recommendation !

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    1. It seems to me that Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, Mark Kelly, accomplish more every day than most people accomplish in a year. They never rest. I am trying to keep up with everything they have going on. And, Gabby has to be one of the most positive individuals one could ever meet. She makes the best of everything.

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  6. I look forward to reading this book and the inspiration/action it will instill. Thank you for the review!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by. I trust you will find inspiration and be stirred to action.

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  7. The book sounds amazing - I watched the special about her the other day on TV - I'm so impressed by this couple - Her hubby is also a triple AAA person! What a guy! and her strength and determination is beyond!!

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    1. I have watched the documentary a couple of times and will most likely see it again (because it speaks to me in some essential place). You know, when a couple goes through a catastrophic event (and the aftermath), it typically does one of two things: 1) tightly bonds the couple even more closely; or 2) causes a split that can't be overcome. Thankfully, these two individuals had one another and the kind of connection that couldn't be torn apart. What a testament it is to who, and what, they are at their core.

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  8. My goodness this is a powerful and inspiring story. To go through such a shocking, terrible ordeal and long rehabilitation really reveals her absolute determination and courage. With her husband by her side going through it together and so strong together. Huge respect is due and it is such a moving story. Thank you for your review and recommendation.

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    1. People thought they knew how amazing Gabby was before the shooting. What was revealed in this extreme crisis was the true depth, and height, of her will (to live, to heal, to use her superpowers for the greater good). Her husband has also revealed his true colors (and they are beautiful).

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