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Reading the Community, for the Community

Looking for a great book to read? Interested in reading books written by community members, for the community?

Check out these books and let us know what you think. We will be adding to this list as more survivors and caregivers become authors!

How My Ordinary Became Extraordinary by Terri Benson

"How My Ordinary Became Extraordinary invites you inside my harrowing journey through one of the worst heart conditions possible. After waking up to find my life fractured by my condition, I fought to reassemble the pieces into a normal life. But when climbing the stairs felt like hiking Everest and brushing my teeth became an actual accomplishment, it didn’t take long to feel discouraged.

This is the true story of my recovery from an aortic dissection and the people and mindsets that pulled me through it. Whether you are standing atop your personal mountain or still scaling the cliffs, this book is for you."

Dissected: Healing With Poetry...My Journey with Two Aortic Dissections by Maria Trinidad Herrera

'Maria Trinidad Herrera had her first Aortic Dissection surgery in 2009. The fears and questions became overwhelming. The difficulty with the diagnosis and the lack of knowledge of some of the medical professionals worked against her. What could have been addressed with a stent or observation, if found on time, led to a complicated and dangerous emergency open-heart surgery that forever changed her life. The psychological traumas after the surgery became a daunting chore and led her to find a healing path. Poetry became her path … and fortified her spirit in her most vulnerable moments.

You are not alone..."

Miracle Man: Beating the Odds; Cheating Death by Scott Pribyl

"Do you know anyone facing, or has faced, major surgery, illness, disease, or other life-changing personal/financial situation? Does that person need hope, inspiration, spiritual grace, and the sheer will to keep going? Do you know people who want to need to lose weight quickly, yet permanently, with minimal exercise?

The author, Scott Pribyl, survived an internal injury that is 90-95percent fatal. In this book, he describes his seven-year rehabilitation and comeback. Pribyl also describes how he lost fifty pounds in two months."

Everyday Sinner: Undeserved Miracles from an Unconditional God by AG Helms

"I laid there helplessly looking at my beautiful husband’s sobbing face as the surgeon said, “You need to decide who is priority… your wife or your child?”Life is such an amazing, wonderful journey, but at times it’s like a badly paved road… you’re traveling along and BAM! Hello whiplash. Hello insurance claim. Hello Route 44 Half and Half Tea with Lemon and the “good ice” you’ve waited all day for that’s dumped all over the floor.

Our lives over the past two years have been more like a bumpy jungle safari trail in an old Jeep with three partially deflated tires. God and we beat infertility. God saved our baby and God saved me… a walking, talking, breathing hot mess… He had mercy on an everyday sinner like me.

There are four cases in the world of pregnant women with Type A and Type B aortic dissections with an aortic aneurysm. Two of those four resulted in both the mother and child perishing. People say we are walking miracles, but we say our GOD is a God of miracles. It took me two years to write this book, emotionally and physically. It holds the most personal details of our journey. I pray that it gives you hope. I pray that it encourages you to speak to your mountain, whatever it may be, with boldness and confidence. I pray that it brings you closer to Jesus Christ. I pray that you turn the last page feeling loved because friend you are so very, very loved.."

*If you would like to add something you have published that you feel will be beneficial to the community, please email

**The material and information contained on this website is for general information purposes only. You should not rely upon the material or information on the website as a basis for making any medical, business or legal decisions.

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