Emily (Louder Than Words Series)

( 1 )


Emily's the sick one . . . all of the time.

Plagued with some sort of cold or fever or bizarre aches and pains for much of her life, Emily thought the dizziness and stomachaches at the start of her senior year were just another bout of "Emily flu." But when they didn't go away, she knew something was seriously wrong. Eventually diagnosed with the rare and incurable West Nile virus, Emily watched her senior year and the future she had planned for go up in smoke.

"I want a normal ...

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Emily's the sick one . . . all of the time.

Plagued with some sort of cold or fever or bizarre aches and pains for much of her life, Emily thought the dizziness and stomachaches at the start of her senior year were just another bout of "Emily flu." But when they didn't go away, she knew something was seriously wrong. Eventually diagnosed with the rare and incurable West Nile virus, Emily watched her senior year and the future she had planned for go up in smoke.

"I want a normal life for a teenager. I want to ache from a long day at work. I want to be so busy that I don't have time to post on my blog. I want to run the race of life instead of being pushed along it in a wheelchair. I want to be on the ride of my life, you know?"

Because Truth Is More Fascinating Than Fiction

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Fiction is fine, but nothing communicates teen problems better than the real stories of real teens who have suffered and survived. Emily Smucker battled for years with an undiagnosed, apparently incurable illness; her memoir sends an unmistakable message of empathy and hope.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780757314148
  • Publisher: Health Communications, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/3/2009
  • Series: Louder Than Words Series
  • Pages: 168
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 4.90 (w) x 6.90 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Emily Smucker loves to write. She keeps a regular diary and takes a notebook with her everywhere she goes. Emily is a Mennonite and born-again Christian, and considers her heroes to be Peter Parker, Hadassah, and Luke Skywalker, because they made the right choice and it changed the world. She loves dreams, Dr. Pepper, badminton, watching people, making movies, and unlike 99.5% of Mennonite girls in America, not coffee or scrapbooking. Her online blog can be found at http://www.xanga.com/SupergirlEmzel.
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Read an Excerpt

August 2007
Three Wishes

If you had the chance to have three wishes (no wishing for more wishes), what would they be and why?
Okay, I admit, it would be easy to think of three easy answers:

1. That I would never get sick again.
2. That I would never get homework in the coming school year.
3. A nicer video camera.

It's also quite easy to get whatever your heart desires in three wishes, despite the whole 'no wishing for more wishes' deal. You could wish:

1. That there would be no more suffering.
2. That whatever we wanted would appear like magic at the snap of our fingers.
3. That everyone would live happily ever after.

See? You could get everything in three wishes.

Oh, whatever. So I think the question is dumb. Who ever listens to me anyway? Maybe I'd better go take my temperature to see if it's gone down a fraction of an inch yet, and go lie in bed where I belong.

A Feeling

I've been having annoying stomachaches lately. Sunday evening I had another one. So I sat out the whole church service, sipping tea and reciting Isaiah 40 to myself. I always recite Isaiah 40 to myself when I have stomachaches. It is very comforting.

I felt better by the time the service was over. My siblings and I went to our cousins Justin and Stephy's house, where we played soccer, ate food, and then just sat around while the guys played a game. It was during that time I began to know I was probably getting sick, because there is a certain feeling you get when you are getting sick. It's not just headache and sore throat—it's a sort of woozy feeling.

When we finally got home, which took a long time due to my brother Matt's game playing, I took my temperature and had a sky-high fever.
Arg zarg. I don't want to be sick again. How will this affect my plans?
At least it's happening now, and not during school.


We were having a normal youth function at my church—sitting around, talking, and having fun. We were mostly talking about what to do for a fundraiser. Should we do another slave auction, where kids from the youth group get auctioned off as slaves and have to do their owner's bidding for the day (within reason, of course)? That was the only idea anyone threw out, even though no one seemed to like it very much.

Then Phebe said, 'I think Emily should write a play for us to perform.'
A murmur of approval and a nodding of heads swept through the room. I glowed. A play! Could I actually write a play? I've written skits before. Actually, I usually just make them up and tell people what to do so I don't have to bother with scripts. But could I write a whole play?
'Okay, I'll do it,' I said.

I'm gonna write a play! And the youth group is gonna ­perform it!

Wow, I have so many things planned for this year. I want to take college algebra at the community college, because I don't think I'm smart enough for advanced math, but I want to take some math this year. Plus, then I'll get some, you know, college experience.

I also want to get a job, because I can finally drive. And I'm going to be a senior, and at my school, that means I don't have to be in school full time. Oh yeah, and there is the little fact that I need money.

Somewhere, Mom found out about some community writing classes, and I think it would be so much fun to take one with her.
Oh, and now that I can drive, I can finally see if I can find some community theater or something to participate in. I'm tired of knowing nothing about drama other than what I make up.

This year I'm also probably going to be yearbook editor. I mean, Justin and I are the only ones who even know how to put pages together, and he was editor last year.

And now, this play! I'll probably have to direct it too, because who besides me can direct a play? Well, J. D. can, but I don't think he would really want to direct my play. I'll probably be put in charge of costumes too. I can't wait!

Wow. Yes, I know that is a lot. I'll probably have to drop something. Or several things. Still, I am looking forward to being busy for once.
Now I just need to get over this dumb sickness and get started!

©2009. Emily Smucker. All rights reserved. Reprinted from Emily. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the written permission of the publisher. Publisher: Health Communications, Inc., 3201 SW 15th Street, Deerfield Beach, FL 33442

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 4, 2011

    This book is a must buy!

    this happy teenager is going through a rough time being sick, i bet its dejavu for everyone! Even for me.

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