In January 1988, aged twelve, Martin Pistorius fell inexplicably sick, and within eighteen months he was mute and wheelchair bound. Doctors were mystified and Martin’s parents were told an unknown degenerative disease had left him with the mind of a baby. What nobody knew is that Martin’s mind then began to wakeup, making him a prisoner inside his completely unresponsive body.
Ten years later, an aromatherapist sensed some part of him was alert and his parents realised that their son was as intelligent as ever. With no memories from before his illness, Martin was still in a wheelchair and unable to speak, but he became brilliantly adept at computer technology. Since then, against all the odds, he has fallen in love, married and set up a web design business.
This is a story, tragic in the telling. And on so many levels. A boy becomes aware of his surroundings, but unable to communicate or move his body is stuck within his own mind, his imagination taking him to places that he cannot. When it is discovered that he is capable of communication, Martin’s world changed fast.
As I read this book, it was like reading a piece of fiction – how could any of this happen to someone so intelligent, yet his body was unable to respond, and he still cannot speak, but he can express emotions and he has feelings. He feels pain, anger, hatred, love, happiness beyond measure. It was hard to believe that this person is real, yet he is a champion – someone who has overcome adversity and lived to tell the tale.
I read with horror some of the things he went through, I laughed and cried when he got engaged to his girlfriend, I felt his parents pain, I felt his pain.
This is a story with a happy ending, I hope the continuing story is happy too.