About the Book

Finding Matthew

During the first few weeks after Matthew was born – brain-damaged as a result of oxygen deprivation during delivery – the doctors advised his parents, Donna and Ed Kirk, to put him in an institution, have another baby as soon as possible, and get on with their life.

But what doctors didn’t understand was that Matthew was their life. Indeed, as he grew, he would surprise everyone with his athletic good looks, spirited personality, and supreme ability to create joy and love as so many people gathered around to help him through his physical and mental struggles.

Now, with the publication of this clear-eyed, laughter-inducing and heart-tugging book, Donna Kirk recounts the story – the love story – of how she and her family found Matthew, and how he found them.

When my kids were babies, (I had three children under the age of three!) people kept telling me to write a book. I dismissed the idea then, thinking no one would be interested in my harried, frantic life. But because Matthew, our eldest, had so many health problems, I decided to keep extensive notes about his visits to doctors. And the writer in me recorded other little details of things that happened in the children’s lives.

Our family was different; indeed, our daily events rivalled the most dramatic soap opera. When my hot flashes started I decided to write the story in earnest – fearing that menopause would play the memory trick on me.

I signed up for writing classes with Brian Henry, who had been a word-smith for twenty-five years, and the book began to take shape. His gentle guidance and the more direct critique of my classmates turned me into a writer. Sort of.

Luckily, I found an agent, Susan Walker, who wanted to handle my book. Susan improved my skills even more, then introduced me to my publisher Don Bastian, whose concise editing helped me craft Finding Matthew into a book I’m proud to have my name on.

While I was engaged in the process of writing and re-writing, the real purpose of the book became clear to me. I wanted to honour Matthew. I wanted others to appreciate the gifts and talents of people who struggle to be understood and who struggle to do the simplest things.

I wanted people to read the book and wish they’d known Matthew.

To purchase Finding Matthew please use the links below.