Based on a true story...
Mary, a caseworker at an agency for intellectually challenged people, meets her new client Chris, whose family wants to put him in a group home.
As she gets to know him, Mary begins to question Chris’s diagnosis. Even as his life gets better, with a job and a new home, Chris seems to get worse and worse. After a series of disasters, including a suicide attempt, leave him homeless, Mary takes Chris to stay with her family temporarily. And that’s when the memories come pouring out.
This true story provides a unique view of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), both from the perspective of a sexual abuse victim recovering the memories of his experiences, and from the day-to-day observations of the person helping him through it. The grim topic is addressed with love, courage, and humour, and Chris’s journey to recovery offers insights into the effects of PTSD and strategies for dealing with its symptoms.
As a retired child psychologist with decades of experience with similar cases and themes, I found the book to offer a compassionate, clear, fresh perspective on the human condition. (Gloria Yablo, Retired Psychologist)
Lazarus Heart is a finalist in the nonfiction section of the Whistler Independent Book Awards, an annual contest for self-published Canadian literature.
Mary O'Sullivan bloomed early as a writer, with a "Most Talented" award in sixth grade for her poetry. She did not attempt writing again until she was in her fifties, with Lazarus Heart, the account of her relationship with a young man who has post-traumatic stress disorder.
Mary has a Masters Degree from University of Toronto in Applied Psychology. She has worked in school boards as a psychometrist, and then spent thirteen years as a case worker for families supporting intellectually challenged members. These families became her heroes and role models, and without their examples the events in Lazarus Heart would not have happened.
For the past nineteen years, Mary has been supporting "Chris," learning about PTSD, and drafting the memoirs of this journey. Lazarus Heart is the first in a series of books charting the healing process of this young man. You can learn more about Mary and her work by visiting her website www.maryosullivan.com