“Lessons from Zachary: Turning Disability into Possibility” by Sandy Scott— Coping


Scott, Sandy. “Lessons from Zachary: Turning Disability into Possibility”, Sandy Scott, 2016.


Amos Lassen

Sandy Scott was a very lucky lady. She lived in a: a beautiful country home with a successful husband who loved her and she was free to be a stay-at-home mom.  No one could have expected what happened next. Sandy’s infant son Zachary was diagnosed with severe brain damage and the doctors felt that he probably wouldn’t live past his first birthday. 

First Sandy was in a state of denial but that moved into despair and grief, thinking that she might never know happiness again. Strangely enough, however, the challenges that she and Zachary faced allowed her to discover her own resources   and a new kind of compassion Zachary brought her into the disability community but Sandy made it her home away from home. She became a life coach and spends her life helping others deal with disability. Now in “Lessons from Zachary”, Sandy Scott shares what she has learned and shows us how we can also get through some of the hard turns we face in life.

Zachary was born with cerebral palsy some twenty-five years ago and he defied the doctor’s diagnosis and is still alive. He has never spoken or fed himself or even rolled over but his life is full. His life has been one of doctors and healthcare. Of course this was never easy for Sandy and she had to learn how to deal with her son. She has been able to get through some very difficult situations and has been able to help her develop our unknown potential and she, in turn, helps us to do the same.

It was due to the very challenges if her son’s condition that caused her to discover her own hidden inner resources and a whole new level of compassion among other people. She became a life coach and took on roles in the disability community.

I have a very close friend who is blind and who has made me aware of people with physical disabilities. I believe that many are afraid of people with disabilities and that comes from a lack of knowledge as to how to deal with them. One must be directly faced with disability to realize that we are not as inclusive a society as we should be and it requires time and patience to understand that we need to do something about the way they are treated. It led me to be part of the inclusion committee at my temple and to make sure that we are set up to deal with anyone who wants to be with us. Sandy shows us how to gain insight and to be better persons as we help those who, in many cases, cannot help themselves.

Sandy shares her fears and dark moments and as we take heed to what she says, I believe that we become better people. This is a story about taking on values that make life more meaningful and it is Sandy’ candor that makes this book such an inspiration.

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