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SUSTAINING POWERS: Rising Above Grief & Loss

SUSTAINING POWERS: Rising Above Grief & Loss

Cathy Powers

This book is for anyone that has ever lost a loved one through traumatic brain injury. It is for any parent who has ever sat up at night worrying about a child serving in the military overseas. It is for those with a parent or grandparent suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, unable to fix or heal them. It is for those who can only watch and wait as their loved one slowly deteriorates and fades away. Cathy Powers writes to reveal her crisis of faith as her son’s survival was in question.

During her journey, Cathy documented her daily life and her son’s progress through a social media platform. While her story and continued faith in God, throughout even the hardest of times, was an inspiration to many, Cathy kept her true fears and struggles hidden. In this book, she opens up to what life was really like for a mother who is forced to live through her worst nightmare: the loss of her son.

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Cathy Powers was invited to the Premier of a video created by POLYTRAUMA REHAB IN THE VA: COMPASSIONATE CARE.in Richmond VA., where her son had received care for his TBI.

Click Here to view the promotional video "Polutrauma Rehab Promo Long 1."

Click Here to view promotional video -- "Polytrauma Rehab Promo Long 2."

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Full Description

This is the story of a mother, her family, and community’s journey to a new normal after a serious traffic accident in which her son sustained severe traumatic brain injury, hospitalization, coma, and the uncertainty of recovery, culminating in his death.

Cathy Powers, a North Carolinian mother of two, had her world turned upside down after receiving a telephone call from the US Air Force. The voice was not her funny and loving son, Airman Bryce Powers. It was an official calling from an airbase in Japan to inform that her son was struggling to hold on to life after being involved in a serious car accident during which he sustained severe brain trauma. She opens her heart to share the tragic, bittersweet, and sometimes even beautiful “new normal” she and her family are thrust into after tragedy strikes her only son, an airman stationed at a small base in Northern Japan.

Cathy writes about the passing of time, the depression from dwindling hope that Bryce would one day emerge from his vegetative state, and eventually, his placement at a 90-day “Emerging Consciousness Program” in Richmond, VA. It was everyone’s hope that Bryce would experience improvement and be able to start participating in his recovery, because he was surrounded by a team of healthcare professionals who do everything in their power to promote healing. This didn’t happen.

Details
Item SPRG
ISBN# 978-1-931117-71-5
Pages 352
Year 2017

Authors

Cathy Powers is a wife, mother of two children -- one still living, a Christian who actively lives out her faith, and a committed spokesperson about how TBI affects parents, family, and community. In her own words, "I continue to walk this grief journey with both good and bad days. . . The only reason I have made it this far with a smile on my face and joy in my heart is because I’m continually choosing to rely on God to help me through each and every day. He is here in spite of my troubles.

Contents

TABLE OF CONTENTS
  • Foreword
  • Author's Note
  • Prologue
  • Chapter One: Early Morning Phone Call
  • Chapter Two: Hopeful Signs
  • Chapter Three: The First Miracle
  • Chapter Four: Why Won't He Wake Up?
  • Chapter Five: Flight to America
  • Chapter Six: Angel of Intercession
  • Chapter Seven: Thanksgiving by Faith
  • Chapter Eight: To the Mainland
  • Chapter Nine: The Ninety-Day Clock
  • Chapter Ten: Family Reunion
  • Chapter Eleven: Believing for a Miracle
  • Chapter Twelve: Christmas in a Coma
  • Chapter Thirteen: Into the New Year
  • Chapter Fourteen: A Happy 21st Birthday
  • Chapter Fifteen: The Halfway Point
  • Chapter Sixteen: It's All Right to Be Human
  • Chapter Seventeen: The Full Ninety Days
  • Chapter Eighteen: God's Healing In His Time
  • Chapter Nineteen: Walking by Faith, Not by Sight
  • Chapter Twenty: Living on a Prayer
  • Chapter Twenty-One: Screaming Loudly on the Inside
  • Chapter Twenty-Two: Honoring Bryce's Wishes
  • Chapter Twenty-Three: Comfort Care
  • Chapter Twenty-Four: No Papers to Sign
  • Chapter Twenty-Five: Renewing Our Vows
  • Chapter Twenty-Six: 7,777 Days on Earth
  • Chapter Twenty-Seven: Going Home Alone
  • Chapter Twenty-Eight: Grieving in Our Own Way
  • Chapter Twenty-Nine: Where to Go from Here?
  • Chapter Thirty: The Rest of the Story
  • Chapter Thirty-One: Seventy Days
  • Epilogue
  • Acknowledgments

Excerpts

I continue to walk this grief journey with both good and bad days. I miss Bryce so much and I don’t expect these aching feelings will ever change.

I used to wonder what would become of us if Bryce didn’t get better. At times I was sure that this tragedy would swallow our entire family. It is indeed hard to bounce back and thrive with living when faced with such a huge loss. There are times when the grief and pain are so intense, it would be easy to stop living the good life and simply exist instead.

There is nothing anyone can say, do, or promise that will take away the pain one feels when grieving the precious lost life of your child. However, I can say for sure that I am thriving, and I still have a hope and a future promised to me.

What’s the secret? The only reason I have made it this far with a smile on my face and joy in my heart is because I’m continually choosing to rely on God to help me through each and every day. He is here in spite of my troubles.

I am confident that he will turn our circumstances, and what was meant to harm or destroy us, into something good.

I believe He helped me write this book to share this message of hope with you. I pray it will be received into the hands of all who need to read it.

The message is simple: God is great, despite what we see, feel, hear, or think. Regardless of the bad things that happen in our lives, if we daily choose to give Him our heart, He will in turn give us His peace. He is the Healer of the wounded and brokenhearted.

Reviews

March 10, 2017

Good Morning Cathy. I received your book yesterday and was able to read the first chapter, but, unfortunately, I may not get to read the rest for a while. I have been staying with my 82-year-old Dad since my Mom passed away last Summer. When I put your book down, my Dad picked it up and started reading it. When I went to bed, he was still reading it. Let me just say: I have NEVER seen my Dad read a book!! It is amazing!!! I am hoping your book will bring him some peace after losing his wife of 59 years. So, once again, Thank You for sharing your journey with us and making us love Bryce like he was our own. By the way, I will let you know how much I love your book when I am able to read it. Love you. – Wanda Jo Sullivan, Powersville, GA

March 9, 2017, 5:01 pm

Your book arrived yesterday at 2 pm, and I cleared my calendar to read for the remainder of the afternoon. I finished your book at 9:41 pm after a dinner break. It is a beautiful, heart-wrenching work, Cathy. Knowing the outcome, I was in tears for many hours while reading. Your honesty and brilliant faith both broke my heart and opened it. Thank you for writing this story and sharing you and your family’s journey with us. I hope it brings y ou much healing. I visited Bryce today to show him your book and tell him how much he is loved. -- Susan K. Coti

March 8, 2017

Yesterday I had the pleasure of finally getting to meet this amazing woman, Cathy Powers. I became online friends and one of thousands of prayer warriors for her son, Bryce, when she started a page for him in October of 2012. He was in the USAF, stationed in Japan, when he was involved in a horrific car accident. I have followed her and her family’s story ever since. I am so proud of her for all the hard work she has done to share her story in her new book! SUSTAINING POWERS is a book about rising above grief and loss. I started reading this last night and never put it down. I read the entire book and climbed into bed an absolutely changed person. Cathy Powers – thank you for being so honest in your book. I was beyond excited when I got my signed copy with a sweet note inside. WOW – you touched me so deeply with raw emotion. I am blessed to be your friend and love you and your sweet, loving heart. -- Sandy Kenley

March 6, 2017

I finished this amazing book, SUSTAINING POWERS, by Cathy Powers. I started it and couldn’t put it down. The choices this family had to make. The heartbreak and forgiveness. How one family’s loss turned into other lives learning what it’s like to watch others trusting completely in God. Through their journey, many hearts have been touched and will continue to be touched by the words of this sweet, living mother. I would completely recommend this book. Please give this new author a chance by buying this book. -- Elsie Musselwhite Autrey, Indian Train, NC

"Dear Cathy I put off reading the book because I knew how your family story ends. I knew the same hallways the emotions the nurses the decisions that we have to make. The numbness that is only filled with prayers and hope. The sadness that fills my heart and yet you lifted my heart. My son Tyler was that 1% and I wish that percentage was 100% My son inspires me and when people ask so he will be back to normal I tell them he will be the new 100% You and your family inspire me to look at life differently Your book inspires me to be a better person Bryce will always remain in my heart and thoughts though we never met I feel so connected. 2b does that to people I remain close friends with Gail and pray everyday for Jesse The strength that is found at our lowest moments brings such everlasting bonds, Though we may never meet I can truly say I love you Love forever your friend Donna Thank you for allowing me to read your bookdyou are a remarkable woman." Donna McGibbon, Toms River, New Jersey

"Cathy Powers, I read your book and I am in awe of your strength and spirit. Every year Bryce finds a place on our tree, front and center. People that visit ask about him and I tell the story but I was never able to tell the "Off Line" story. Thank you for opening your heart up and sharing with us the darkest days of your life. I am grateful to Gwyn for her friendship! I am praising God that your family was able to endure the darkest days ever and that you all remain a family unit. I now have a better understanding of what you all went through and I am so sorry that ANYONE has to go through this tragedy. Your book opened my eyes in many ways and really helped me to know the Grace of God better. I pray God continues to hold you, Jim and Madi in the palm of his hand and bring you all peace. I know my story to people at Christmas will be a little bit different now. I love you WingSister!" Karol Hennessey, Pooler, Georgia

"Cathy Powers my dear beautiful FB friend. I actually received my book Monday. I finally finished the last few pages this morning on our trip down south to visit family. You already know what I think because I private messaged you. So I'm going to say a couple more things here. Thank you for allowing us into the most vulnerable time in your life and the most difficult that any family should never have to endure. Bless your magnificent husband and your extra special sweet daughter. You all are extremely courageous human beings in my book. I hope not only does this help so many others who find themselves in life's unpredictable moments that leave us struggling but I hope it brings you peace and that you find your days are more fulfilled. You did a marvelous job honoring your beautiful Bryce. Hugs to you from Your Kansas family. God bless You, Jim and Madison." Gail Williams, Geneseo, Kansas

"Midnight, 25 March 2017 -- Yes, I am awake. But for a good reason. Today, I was honored to receive my signed copy of "Sustaining Powers" written by my dear friend, Cathy Powers. I started reading it around 1730 or so tonight and I just finished it. That's right, all 342 pages in one evening. I am going to say this, I don't promote very many things in this World, but I will tell you that this books is well worth the time to read and then keep nearby for a reference. We all experience loss in different ways depending on us and who we lose. This book cover the real life loss of a Child from the Mother's perspective. The emotions, the inner conflicts, the hard decisions, the turmoil are all included between these two covers. I understand that not all my Friends and Family are of the same Religious Faith, but the contents of this book can bridge the differences. We all experience the tragic loss of loved ones, and this book covers that loss extremely well. I encourage folks to get their hands on a copy of it and take the time to read it. Well written and easy to follow content." Jim Wise, Jacksonville, Florida

"WOW!!!!!! Finished the book in 3 sittings. I had a very hard time putting it down. Thank you for being so transparent and sharing your TRUE heart with us. It has touched my heart very much. God is AMAZING!!!!!! Love You My AMMO Sister!!! You will be always in my prayers. I can't wait to meet Bryce over Yonder!!!" "I am elated I bought four. I have plans to give on to an older couple in my church that just lost there great grandson a couple of weeks ago. The others will be kept until another needy person comes along. It is a book that will touch lives over and over." Dave Wright, Layton, Utah

"My heart is broken but my spirit rejoices knowing Mom has her new Glorified body now, free from earthly diseases. She's met her Mother and is with Billy. And she is in the Glory of God. Think about that. Hard to wish her back when such blessings are hers now but I will miss her every day. Until we meet again. We've been in a limbo of grief for a while now. Alzheimer's took her away from us slowing and this Ambiguous Loss has run havoc on those that love her the most. Literarily you can not grieve bc she is still physically here but you have lost who she is to a cruel disease that has no mercy on the patient, their friends and loved ones. My dear Wing-sister Cathy Powers writes about this in her book SUSTAINING POWERS. The journey their family endured when their Treasured Airman Bryce suffered a TBI. Reading this book this last week helped me to understand the chaos and emotions so foreign in our family. Cathy Powers you have blessed me once again through your heartbreaking loss and journey. I hope Bryce will show Mom he's there too because I know she prayed for him too!! As we prepare for this celebration of her life please keep our family in your prayers. Sleep has evaded a few of us. I'm so grateful to those who have reached out and blessed us with visits and food. You will never know what it means to be loved in this way unless a similar circumstance has happened in your life. It means so very much. So hold on tighter, hug a little longer, say and show your love. Life is short." "Cathy, Your wisdom, transparency and faith has helped to clarify what we've been feeling and dealing with too! It's been invaluable!!!" Terrie Ann Powell, North Carolina

"Cathy, I finished the book last night wiping tears as I could feel the immense love you have for Bryce and your prayers for the ultimate miracle of Healing. May God continue to bring you and your family peace as Bryce forever lives on in your heart. Thank you for bringing me closer to God through your journey of hope, faith and grief ((( HUGS )))" Lynne Cope, Forest, VA

"Yesterday I read this book. This is my wingsister and friend. This book touched me, like no other. She was my friend before this tragic accident and I walked down this road with her. I even met her and attended her daughters "surprise" 18th birthday party, when I was in NC helping my sister pack to move to OK. I'm so proud of her for having the courage and strength to write and share this horrible time that no parent should ever have to go through. I love you Momma Powers and we will go the Bryce Canyon, together, one day." Linda Palmer, Utah

"Just finished this book about my cousin, SrA Bryce K. Powers. He passed away on April 26, 2013 after being in a coma from a traumatic brain injury while serving in the United States Air Force. It was written by my amazing aunt, Cathy Powers. I am so proud of all the hard work she put into this heartfelt work. Also for having the courage and strength to share her experiences and struggles. I highly recommend this book for anyone with loved ones serving in the military or anyone who has experienced a loss. I love you Cathy, Madison, and Jim. And of course my cousin Bryce as well." Ashley McCormick, Dubuque, Iowa

"Oh, my. I feel so connected to you Cathy Powers as I am reading your book. Knowing the difficult outcome does not minimize the strong emotions I am experiencing as I read this. Perhaps this is due to how my son faced traumatic brain injury which makes me relate more. Oh, how I wish this turned out differently." April B. Willey, Delaware

"Kyle and I received your book earlier this week and I have just finished reading it. You have an amazing talent for writing and it was very easy to read. Each time I picked up your book I would read for hours and didn't want to put it down! Kyle attended school with Bryce and when we heard the news of Bryces accident it broke our hearts. We followed the prayer page closely the whole time. We were so heartbroken to hear Bryce would no longer be with us all on earth but was comforted in knowing he would no longer be in pain and received the ultimate healing in heaven. I can't imagine going through what your family has been through and staying as strong as you have been. You and your beautiful family are truly a wonderful example of how God is our strength and will carry us through any battle life throws us if we put our trust in him. Thank you for taking the time to pour out your heart for us to see. Your book has touched my heart and I know will do the same for many others. I pray God continues to shower you and your family with peace,love and comfort every day." Brittany DiAngelis, Columbia, Kentucky

"I started reading and couldn't put it down. I cried my eyes out. To process what I'd read, I basically summarized your whole journey to my husband. I learned so much from your book-about TBI, the parts of your journey I hadn't learned from your FB journal, things about the military, about death, and about grieving. Following along with your posts in 2012, I was profoundly moved, but I will never forget your story. As I was reading, I kept picturing visiting Bryce's grave at Arlington and it gave it so much more meaning. Thank you for sharing your very raw emotions. I can't imagine how you summoned the courage, but am so very proud of you. Your book is going to touch thousands, if not millions of hearts." Susan Seaberry

"I know I need to sleep, but I cant put this book down. Im inspired and just awestruck at a story of circumstances beyond human control and just dont even have words. Realized its now almost 6am and Ive been home an hour and a half or so now, made some food and kept on reading. Hopefully rest will find me soon, but for now I'm enjoying being curled up in my warm blankie with pillows all around as I read. For anyone looking for a new book...this is it. "Sustaining Powers: Rising Above Grief and Loss". I only wish I could be half the woman Momma Powers is. What a beautiful soul and so beyond inspiring and brave to share such a deep part of life." Shelley Deal, Leesburg, Florida

"Cathy Powers, I received your signed book today and started reading It the minute I got home from work and just finished.. my heart is breaking all over again for you and your family. I am re-living Bryce's accident, hospital stay and then death all over again with you, and crying through your hopeful days and bad days and eventually the inevitable days, it's still so sad to think about it and you and your family lived through it. Your strength and soul searching and truth statements in Life Offline, were so real and so touching, you're an amazing woman Cathy Powers. Very well written and from the heart, soul and faith. I love you my friend.... Everyone hug your children a little tighter tonight. I can't stop crying...." Debra Schramm, Florida

"Got your book today. I can see it will take me awhile to read it all. I got to page and had to stop. Tears flowing to much. I've all ways said I got more of my moms geans (genes) or what ever, then my dads, because I tear up so easy! Also I lost my youngest niece at 44 years old last Nov. 8th to a rare brain cancer after an almost 9 year battle. So it will be a long read, but am looking forward to it!! I hope it has been a blessing to you and your family writing it! Bryce was an AMMO brother I never got to meet as I retired in late '87!! GOD Bless you all Cathy, Jim, and Madison!!" Edward Doan, Michigan

"Good Morning Cathy. I received your book yesterday and was able to read the first chapter but unfortunately I may not get to read the rest for a while. I have been staying with my 82-year old dad since my mom passed away last summer. When I put your book down, my dad picked it up and started reading it. When I went to bed, he was still reading it. Let me just say, I have NEVER seen my dad read a book! Magazines and repair manuals, yes; but never a book. It is amazing! I am hoping your book will bring him some peace after losing his wife of 59 years. So once again thank you for sharing your journey with us and making us love Bryce like he was our own. By the way, I will let you know how much I love your book when I am able to read it. Love you." Wanda Jo Sullivan, Georgia

"Your book arrived yesterday at 2 pm, and I cleared my calendar to read for the remainder of the afternoon. I finished your book at 9:41 pm after a dinner break. It is a beautiful, heart wrenching work Cathy. Knowing the outcome, I was in tears for many hours while reading. Your honesty and brilliant faith both broke my heart and opened it. Thank you for writing this story and sharing your and your family's journey with us. I hope it brings you much healing. I visited Bryce today to show him your book and tell him how much he is loved." Susan Coti, Arlington, Virginia

"Yesterday I had the pleasure of finally getting to meet this amazing woman, Cathy Powers. I became online friends and one of thousands of prayer warriors for her son Bryce, when she started a page for him in October of 2012. He was in the USAF stationed in Japan, when he was in a horrific car accident. I have followed her and her family's story ever since. I am so proud of her for all the hard work she has done to share her story in her new book! "Sustaining Powers." This book is about rising above grief and loss. I started reading this last night and never put it down. I read the entire book, and climbed into bed and was absolutely a changed person. Cathy Powers, thank you for being so honest in your book. I was beyond excited when I got my signed copy with a sweet note inside. Wow, you touched me so deeply with raw emotion. I am blessed to be your friend, and love you and your sweet, loving heart." Sandy Kenley, North Carolina

"I finished this amazing book, Sustaining Powers,by Cathy Powers.. I started it and couldn't put it down. The choices this family had to make. The heartbreak andforgiveness. How one family's loss turned into other lives learning what it's like to watch others trusting completely in God. Through their journey many hearts have been touched and will continue to be touched by the words of this sweet, loving mother. I would completely recommend this book. Please give this new author a chance by buying this book." Elsie Autrey, Indian trail, NC

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