One Call Away: Answering Life's Challenges with Unshakable Faith

( 55 )

Overview

What can you do when your well-laid plans fallapart and life takes an unexpected turn?

Brenda Warner is best known as the outspoken wife of NFL superstar andDancing with the Stars alum Kurt Warner. But years earlier, she foundherself living through any woman’s nightmare: a healthy baby tragically injuredin the bathtub; a sudden end to a career she loved; betrayal and divorce; poverty;public humiliation; a deadly natural disaster that destroyed her foundation andshook her to her ...

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One Call Away: Answering Life's Challenges with Unshakable Faith

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Overview

What can you do when your well-laid plans fallapart and life takes an unexpected turn?

Brenda Warner is best known as the outspoken wife of NFL superstar andDancing with the Stars alum Kurt Warner. But years earlier, she foundherself living through any woman’s nightmare: a healthy baby tragically injuredin the bathtub; a sudden end to a career she loved; betrayal and divorce; poverty;public humiliation; a deadly natural disaster that destroyed her foundation andshook her to her core. One shattering phone call at a time, Brenda Warner’s lifecame to resemble little of her dream.

But each time her plans fell apart, Brenda faced a choice: to collapse in the faceof tragedy or press forward and survive. She chose to keep going. In the process,she’s learned that the unexpected is only one call away. Her story provides hopeand encouragement for anyone facing life’s challenges and shows us that ourcircumstances don’t tell us who we are, nor are they a measure of God’s love. Godhas a plan for us, even when our plans fail. Brenda’s life is proof that sometimes thebest dreams are not the ones we dream, but the ones that come true when we leastexpect them.

“Brenda Warner remains a soldier fi ghting for faith and life in the face of unexplainabledevastation. The fortitude of this ‘marine mom’ will grab your heart. If youthink Kurt Warner’s journey is moving, do not wait to read the story of Brenda.”

—Elizabeth Hasselbeck, co-host of The View and special contributor forGood Morning America, ABC News

“We have all had the phone ring and our lives changed. Brenda Warner’s moving andinspiring memoir reminds us all of the power of family, the miracles and misfortunesof life, and the foundation that faith plays in our all-too-human existences.Unflinching and fearless, she is the woman I want in my corner: safe, smart, andsavvy. A heroine for us all.”

—Jamie Lee Curtis, Author/actress/mother/sister

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780849947193
  • Publisher: Nelson, Thomas, Inc.
  • Publication date: 9/6/2011
  • Pages: 368
  • Sales rank: 770,644
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Brenda Warner

Brenda Warner is a speaker, philanthropist, and New York Times best-selling author. She is the mother of seven children, a registered nurse, and a marine. But most of all, she is a storyteller who candidly shares her struggles in hopes that her life experiences can help other women. Brenda is also vice president of the First Things First Foundation, an organization she co-founded with her husband, NFL player Kurt Warner.

Jennifer Schuchmann is the host of the television program Right
Now with Jennifer Schuchmann
on WATC-TV Atlanta and the coauthor of One
Call Away
with Brenda Warner. She holds an MBA from Emory University and has an extensive public speaking background. Jennifer and her husband, David, have been married for over twenty years, and together they have a teenage son, Jordan. You can find her online at wordstothinkabout.com.

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Read an Excerpt

One Call Away

Answering Life's Challenges With Unshakable Faith
By Brenda Warner Jennifer Schuchmann

Thomas Nelson

Copyright © 2011 Brenda Warner
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-0-8499-4989-0


Chapter One

Life-Changing Call

The call came in half an hour before quitting time. I was twenty-two and the lowest-ranking marine in my office. It was my job to answer the phone.

I picked up the receiver. "Lance Corporal Meoni."

"Sweetheart," said my husband. Immediately I knew something was wrong. Though Neil was at home taking care of our four-month-old son, Zack, he rarely called the office, preferring that I call him during a break. "Zack's breathing funny."

"What do you mean, Zack's breathing funny?"

"I don't know. He's just not breathing right."

"Put him on the phone." It sounds like a silly thing to say, but Neil knew what I meant. He held up the receiver to Zack's face, and I listened closely to his breathing. I heard gurgling, so I knew he was getting air.

"Do you hear it?" Neil asked.

"Yeah, it doesn't sound right. What do you think?"

"I think you should come home."

I hung up the phone and walked around the corner to talk to the staff sergeant. With his permission, I packed up my stuff and headed to the car. After his brain surgery several years earlier, Neil had suffered from seizures that left him unable to drive or work. Though the seizures were under control by now, he still had a few months to go before getting his driver's license back. Each day I took our only car to work while Neil stayed home with Zack.

* * *

Neil sat in the glider, holding Zack swaddled in a blue comforter. The baby wasn't crying, and everything looked normal.

"Let me see him," I said. Neil pulled back the comforter, and I looked at Zack's chest. It didn't look like it was moving.

"We've got to go!" I scooped Zack up in the comforter and ran for the car. Neil got there first, opened the passenger door, and got in so I could put Zack in his arms. I got in the driver's side, backed out of the parking spot, and peeled down the road. There was an emergency clinic just around the block.

* * *

"My baby's having trouble breathing," I told the nurse behind the desk. She took a look at him and immediately ushered us to a separate waiting room.

"Wait here. I'll be back to get you in a minute." Then she snatched Zack out of my arms and took him to a treatment room.

There was a flurry of activity in the room behind us. I heard someone call for the doctor, and then a voice said, "This child isn't breathing."

I looked up at Neil, and he stared back with a blank expression. I wasn't panicking, but I could feel the denial setting in. This isn't happening. They've got a different child. Not my child.

The room felt cold and antiseptic. We stood there, not speaking, just listening to the sounds from the other side of the wall. Then I prayed. Oh, God, please help me. Please help me. What's going on? God, please make him okay. After what seemed like hours but was probably only a few minutes, the doctor came in. "We're sending him to Portsmouth Naval Hospital."

"What do you mean you're sending him?"

"We're sending him in an ambulance."

"Can we go with him?"

"No, I'm sorry. You'll have to follow in your own car."

* * *

The ambulance left the medical office as we got into the car. The driver turned on his siren and pulled into traffic, and I pulled in behind him. I can't believe my baby's in that ambulance.

While I focused on staying with the ambulance, Neil sat stone quiet. The whole experience was surreal. Just that morning, my perfect, healthy, chubby baby had smiled at me when I kissed him good-bye. Now his life was in danger. I needed to remain calm for my son, so I did the only thing I knew to do—I prayed. But words failed me. All I could say was, "Oh God, oh God, oh my God!"

I was not the crier in our relationship. But even if I had been, I knew now wasn't the time. I needed to focus on getting to the hospital and getting Zack the help he needed. Neil had always been more emotional than I, but his seizure medications made it worse. It didn't surprise me when he started crying right there in the car.

We followed the ambulance into the emergency entrance but quickly realized no parking was available there. I circled back to look for parking in the lot, but all the spaces were full. I need a parking place now!

"Just park!" Neil had apparently run out of tears and now, out of patience.

But I was a rule follower, a marine. I couldn't just leave our car anywhere. I needed order, especially during a crisis. Eventually I found a space, and Neil and I bolted out of the car and sprinted to the hospital entrance.

We entered through the glass doors and rushed up to the desk. "Our son was just brought in," I said, trying to catch my breath. "The baby. We need to see him."

"You'll have to wait over there." The woman behind the desk pointed to the waiting room without even looking at us.

"Can't we see him now?"

"I'm sorry. You'll have to wait."

I couldn't believe it! Frustrated, I turned toward the seating area. People filled the room. All of them were waiting to be seen, but they didn't even look sick. They looked like they had a cold or needed a Band-Aid. I wanted to scream, "People! My child is in there, and he's not breathing!"

I managed to hold myself together. Neil and I sat down in the hard plastic chairs and stared silently at the white-brick walls. I lowered my eyes so I didn't have to look at the people who didn't look sick. Half-empty cups and last month's magazines were strewn across plastic end tables. The room smelled like coffee and air freshener. I thought about my mom and dad and desperately wanted to call them, but I decided to wait until I had more information.

In a crisis, I always wanted to take action, to be the strong one. But now I couldn't do anything, so I sat motionless in the chair, my muscles tense, my mind worrying.

Eventually a clerk with a clipboard appeared. We followed her to a small room with more plastic chairs. "Have a seat," she said. "I need to get some information from you."

I wanted her to hurry up so I could see Zack, but the woman was so deliberate with her movements, she seemed to move in slow motion. She clicked her pen and poised it above the clipboard. "Names?"

"Brenda and Neil Meoni," I said. "Our baby is Zack."

"How old are you?"

"I'm twenty-two."

Neil answered, "I'm twenty-three."

All I could think was, Why does this matter? Who cares how old we are?

"Your address?"

We gave it.

"How old is Zack?"

"Four months."

"Any health problems?"

"No."

"Any allergies?"

"No! He's perfectly healthy. He just stopped breathing."

I knew she needed this information so they could treat Zack. I knew that. But I was worried they wouldn't treat him until we finished. So I spit out short answers as fast as I could.

"Can you tell me what happened?" she asked.

"I was at work when it happened." I glanced at Neil. "He can give you the details."

"I was giving him a bath, and he just started breathing funny."

"Can you tell me more?"

"I was giving him a bath, and when I took him out of the tub, he started breathing funny."

"What do you mean? What did he sound like?"

"I don't know. It just didn't sound right. It was kind of like a gurgle." Neil squirmed in his chair. I could tell it was hard for him to put what happened into words.

"Did he change colors?"

"Uh, no, he didn't change colors."

"He didn't get blue in the face or anywhere else?"

"No."

"So what did you do next?"

Neil walked her through it detail by detail, explaining how he had taken Zack into his room, how he'd worried about Zack's breathing, and how he'd diapered him and wrapped him in the comforter before calling me.

As he talked, all I could think was, Hurry up. Please hurry up. Although I convinced myself they had to be working on Zack, I felt as if every question prevented me from seeing my sick baby boy.

When she finished, the clerk told us to follow her to a private treatment room where we could wait. Over the next hour, nurses and doctors came in and out of the room, each asking the same question. "Can you tell me what happened?"

Each time he was asked, Neil told them the same thing: "He just started breathing funny."

"Do these people not talk to each other?" I asked Neil when we were alone. "Hasn't anybody put this information in the records by now?"

He didn't answer, and I knew he couldn't. I was just frustrated and impatient with the lack of progress.

Between visits by the medical staff, I paced the small room, my mind frantically searching for answers to what was wrong. No one had given us any indication of what was happening. We were left to imagine the worst.

Finally, another doctor came in, but this time he started out by giving us information. "We're not sure what's causing it, but Zack's brain is swelling at a pretty fast rate," he said. "Can you tell me what happened?"

Are you kidding me? Again?

Once again, Neil repeated the story. "He was in the tub, and when I got him out, he just started breathing funny."

"We're not sure what's wrong, so we'll have to run a few tests to determine what's causing his brain to swell. There's a small possibility it's meningitis, but we won't know for sure unless we do a spinal tap."

The doctor explained that this involved sticking a needle into Zack's spinal cord, removing fluid, and testing it for meningitis. "There are some risks with this procedure, but they're minimal. In rare cases there can be bleeding or an infection. I'll need your permission before we can proceed."

They're going to stick a needle in Zack's spine? In my baby's spine?

"If it will help Zack, do it. Please just do it," I said. "When can we see him?"

"You can see him when I'm done."

Neil and I sat quietly in the plastic chairs and waited. There were no windows in the room, and I had lost track of time. A nurse finally came in and said, "They did the spinal tap, and Zack did great. Now we just need to wait for the test results to see if it's meningitis. That could take a couple of hours. Zack is stable, and we're going to move him to the pediatric ward. You can wait for him there."

* * *

The pediatric ward reminded me of my squad bay at boot camp on Parris Island. It was one long, beige-colored room with at least twenty beds lined up in bays along the perimeter. But most of the beds here didn't look like regular beds; they looked like metal cages. There was an occasional hospital bed for an older child, but the toddlers and babies were kept in metal cribs. Some even had metal tops to keep active toddlers from escaping.

"They're not going to put Zack in one of these, are they?" I whispered to Neil.

A group of nurses and other medical professionals moved in and out of the nurses' station in the center of the room. A nurse with dark-brown hair looked up and smiled. She grabbed a clipboard and approached us.

"Are you the Meonis?" she asked, looking down at her clipboard.

"Yes," I said.

"They just called up to say Zack will be here soon. I'll show you where his bed is."

She led us to a bay on the right side of the room. Two plastic chairs faced an empty metal crib. Folded against the wall was a beige metal lamp attached to a long metal arm. A monochrome monitor waited to be hooked up. The tiled floors and beige walls made the room feel sterile. The smell of rubbing alcohol lingered in the air. "You can sit here and wait," she said. "It won't be long."

But I didn't sit. I wanted to see what was going on. Despite the size of the ward and the number of people in it, everything was quiet and calm. Nobody screamed in pain. Nurses didn't have to hurry to get to anybody. Parents held small children in their arms and swayed back and forth. A little boy wearing faded hospital pajamas and breathing into a nebulizer lay in the bed next to us. It's going to be okay, I reassured myself. If they send kids here who only need an inhaler, how bad could it be for Zack?

Neil sat down on the hard chair and buried his head in his hands. "I can't believe this happened."

I wanted to comfort him, but I wasn't sure how. He seemed confused. I sat down in the chair next to him as he repeated to himself, "How does this happen? How does this happen?"

One of the differences between Neil and me was our faith in God. My relationship with Jesus gave me strength. But Neil didn't have that kind of relationship. He had grown up in a Catholic family, but he rarely went to church anymore. At the most desperate times in my life—like now—I could turn to my faith, but Neil couldn't.

I stared at the empty metal crib and whispered my prayers. "What's going on? Please help us, God. Give us strength. Heal Zachary."

An orderly came in and rolled away the metal crib. That gave me hope. They're putting Zack into a real bed. But minutes later, the orderly brought the crib back with Zack inside, and my hope turned to fear. I understood why they needed to put him in the crib, but compared to his sweet blue and white crib in our apartment, this looked like a torture device, complete with tubes and wires.

As they rolled him into place, I heard Zack making a sound he'd never made before. It was like a horrible moan that came from somewhere deep inside.

I immediately went over to him, but there were so many medical people working around his bed, I couldn't get close enough to touch him. One nurse was hanging a bag of IV fluid. Another nurse had unscrewed his oxygen line from the tank and was plugging it into the wall. Yet another was checking his vital signs, while a fourth stood at the end of his crib, recording numbers. "BP? Pulse? Oxygen?"

Zack was wearing only a diaper. He'd never looked so small and frail. His head looked too big, much larger than it had at the clinic just a few hours earlier. A red light attached to his toe reported oxygen levels, and his mattress was elevated so his head was higher than his feet.

He continued to make that horrible moaning sound, and every part of my body strained to stop his pain and comfort him. I'd never felt so helpless. Several of the nurses finished and left his bedside, so I moved in closer to get a better look at my dark-haired little boy. I reached through the metal slats and rubbed his foot. There was no response. Just more of those hideous moans.

One of the nurses remained. Her name tag read, "Remi." She lowered the metal slats on one side of the bed. "You'll be able to see him better this way," she said. "You can touch him, but you can't pick him up. He's too fragile."

Zack's visceral groaning continued. Neil remained seated. I leaned over Zack's bed and rubbed his face and kissed him.

Remi asked me to take a step back so she could change one of his tubes. As I waited, I caught a glimpse through the window. Outside I saw the overpass, where two highways merged together, and watched as cars and trucks zoomed by without slowing down.

I wanted to scream, "Stop! Everybody just stop! Something is terribly wrong with my son!" My world was spinning out of control, and I needed help. So I turned to the only One I knew who could take care of things. I prayed out loud, not caring who heard me. "God, you've got to step in here. He's so sick!"

Then I heard Remi's voice. "He's starting again."

I turned back to see Zack's right pinkie finger beginning to shake, and then I watched as his face began to twitch. Nurses who had left his bedside came running.

(Continues...)



Excerpted from One Call Away by Brenda Warner Jennifer Schuchmann Copyright © 2011 by Brenda Warner. Excerpted by permission of Thomas Nelson. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Table of Contents

Part 1 A Dream Comes and Goes, 1967-1992

1 Life-Changing Call 3

2 Blind Love 13

3 Centered 21

4 Called 31

5 Orders 39

6 Close Quarters 49

7 A Blast from the Past 57

8 Prayer and Seizures 67

9 Accident Investigation 75

10 Release 83

11 Going Back Home 93

12 Moving On 99

13 Struggles at Home 109

14 Saying Good-bye 117

15 Moving Out 127

Part 2 The Man I Wanted, 1992-1998

16 Decisions 137

17 Wanted 145

18 In the Dark 155

19 On My Own 165

20 The Bachelor Party 173

21 Long Distance 183

22 The Worst Call 191

23 The Damage 197

24 Final Arrangements 205

25 Questions Remain 213

26 Commitment 221

27 Kurt Warner 229

Part 3 The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, 1998-2005

28 Firsts 241

29 QB1 249

30 Fighting for Normal 259

31 Super Expectations 265

32 First Things First 271

33 Call-ins 279

34 Personal Attacks 289

35 Giant Letdowns 297

Part 4 Restoration and Reflection, 2005-Present

36 Phoenix Rising 309

37 Twins 317

38 Discoveries 327

39 My Name Is Brenda 335

Epilogue: Unexpected Life 345

Acknowledgments 353

About Brenda Warner 355

About Jennifer Schuchmcmn 357

About the First Things First Foundation 359

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 55 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(32)

4 Star

(17)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(2)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 55 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 22, 2011

    Great Read

    Ok I got to be honest..lol..I never watch or know anything about Football,but when this book came up it sounded like it would be a good read and I was right!! She is married to Football star Kurt Warner. From the very first page I did not want to put it down. It has you from the first line. Wow from joining the marines right out of school too what tragic things have happened in her life from her son's tragic accident as a baby,her first husband cheating on her,her parents dying in a tornado. She is one tough gal. She is very open and honest in this book and speaks frank and from the heart. She shares how her faith in God has gotten her through so many sad things in her life. She shares how it's not her plans that will always come about but God will always be the final person who writes your life story out and creates the plans. There were a few parts I didn't like in the book such as going to bars and drinking but other then that it was a very good book and I think she's a get out and get done kind of lady which I like. Great book overall.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 24, 2012

    The Book ¿One Call Away¿ by Brenda Warner, wife of football MVP

    The Book “One Call Away” by Brenda Warner, wife of football MVP Kurt
    Warner portrays her life as a woman dedicated to service in the form of
    being a marine, wife, mother, nurse, and most of all a child of God. The
    book is titled “One Call Away” because her life was changed one phone
    call at a time. From her son's tragic accident when he was an infant to
    her ex-husband's betrayal and divorce. She had a choice to make with
    each phone call: to give in to the tragedy and let it take over her life
    or move forward and survive. She chose to survive. She held on to her
    faith in God and her hope for a better future. Brenda and Kurt have a
    beautiful family and their marriage is an example to other couples.
    There are even pictures of her and her family in the center of the book.
    I enjoyed this book very much and recommend it for people from all walks
    of life.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 20, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Brenda was born in a close-knit family short on money, but long

    Brenda was born in a close-knit family short on money, but long on love.
    From an early age she sought to be noticed and loved to dance for her
    relatives. They applauded her performances, and occasionally even joked
    she “looked like a stripper.” Although she had no idea what a stripper
    was, she realized they must attract attention. Later when kids in her
    church were asked what they wanted to be when they grew up, Brenda said,
    “I want to be a preacher . . . or a stripper.” After her family saw a
    movie about the rapture her dance card included Jesus when they all
    responded to the altar call. Without money to attend college, Brenda
    decided her best option would be to follow in her father’s footsteps and
    join the marines. While in training, she meets a good-looking squad
    leader and falls in love. Health issues force him out of the military
    and leave him unemployed. So after the birth of their first child the
    support of the family is laid on Brenda’s broad shoulders. Her husband
    remains at home and cares for their newborn while she returns to work.
    The baby, while under his care, is dropped and the child is left blind
    and brain damaged. With the care of a disabled son added to her plate,
    Brenda had no choice but to leave her beloved military career.
    Eventually her husband finds a job and they decide to add to their
    family. Brenda is eight months pregnant when her husband adds insult to
    injury by admitting he’s been having an affair. She packs her bags and
    she and their son leave. Back in her refuge and safe haven—her parent’s
    home—she begins a new life as a single mom of two. A new career choice
    must be made and she decides nursing would help her gain knowledge to
    continue the care of her son and offer a flexible schedule. Student
    loans and grants get her back in school, while welfare and food stamps
    help feed her family. A weekly outing with her mom brings some needed
    fun, and soon a college football player line-dances into her life–Kurt
    Warner. Brenda’s romance with husband Kurt Warner and his fairy tale
    rise to Super Bowl fame is the fluff that dreams are made of, but inside
    every dream come true is a back story. As tragedy after tragedy assailed
    her she clung to the two things she could count on, her faith in God and
    her parents. Then the unthinkable happens. Both her parents are killed
    in a tornado. She said, “If the devil was trying to destroy me, if he
    wanted to take me out, taking my parents from me was the way to do it.”
    Her final earthly lifeline was blown away. I related to this story and
    I believe readers will too. How many have had life not turn out as
    planned? Accidents, broken dreams, and people can all cause us
    heartache. Brenda’s rags to riches story is a wonderful account of how
    God works to bring people and circumstances together to redeem and
    restore what’s been snatched away. Go Team Warner. Enjoy the dance.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 19, 2011

    Inspiring

    This is the story of Brenda Warner, the wife of Kurt Warner. It is a rags to riches story and follows Brenda's life as she overcomes many obstacles throughout her life. She has overcome and given much back to society. I found this very interesting as well as inspiring. It is truly a faith journey.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 18, 2011

    From an original doubter, Brenda Warner's book is worth the price and the time.

    I heard Brenda interviewed on NPR and decided she was worth reading even though I have had my fill of so called "religious reformers".
    I was delighted and surprised by her very candid and honest telling of her life's lucky breaks and mis-calculations and the part her faith has played in all that. I cried and I haven't cried reading a book for a very long time and I laughed and I haven't laughed reading a book for a long time either. And one other thing, these Warners' are true , they are a huge benefit to this world even though they no longer need to be in the limelight. I absolutely fell in love with both of them.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 10, 2011

    Inspiring

    This was a very good read, if you believe in faith. She had so many issues that would have broken the back of most people. She always have to pull herself up from the boot straps & with her faith, was able to continue her journey. I believe that there is nothing you can do, if you have faith & believe in a Higher Power who wants you to be the best you can me.

    Her story is amazing & I wish her the best in the future.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 2, 2011

    The Memoir of Brenda Warner

    One Call Away is the memoir of Brenda Warner, best known as the wife of NFL player Kurt Warner. She has experienced more pain and heartbreak in her lifetime than any one person should ever have to experience. Her first husband accidentally dropped her firstborn in the bathtub, causing disabilities in her baby, then cheated on her, resulting in divorce and the end of her career as a Marine. Her parents died in a tornado, which shattered her life to its core. She is a strong woman, who believes her dreams came to be when an unexpected man, Kurt Warner, entered her life as husband and father to her children. This book is her story.

    This was one of the most difficult reviews I've written. I sincerely wanted to love this book. The theme of rags to riches and tragedy to triumph accurately describes her story. The life paths she traveled, as a Christian, were disappointing to read. As a Christian, she does not seem to regret losing her virginity at nineteen as part of her birthday celebration, pre-marital sex, and lifestyles that most followers of Christ would not participate.

    She seemed overly concerned with her beauty and at times self-absorbed. Her marriage brought wealth and opportunities that family and friends had granted to her during difficult times. But her response to their needs was the following : "When our friends and family were still struggling to pay their bills-just as I had for so many years - they didn't know how to be emotionally supportive of a multimillionaire. And I didn't know how to be supportive of them."

    Maybe, the author's deeper purpose of this writing was to clear up misconceptions of her image and reputation. Sadly, she probably added more fuel to that fire. If you are drawn to tabloid journalism, you may enjoy this. It lacked the inspiration I was seeking.

    Brenda Warner is a speaker, philanthropist, and New York Times best-selling author. She is the mother of seven children, a registered nurse, and a Marine. But most of all, she is a storyteller who candidly shares her struggles in hopes that her life experiences can help other women. Through her message of hope and faith, and her charitable work, she inspires others during their own dark days. As a speaker, Brenda encourages her audiences to take responsibility for their choices and to depend on their faith when they hit rough patches. Listeners have found practical hope through her stories. Brenda is also Vice President of the First Things First Foundation, an organization she co-founded with her husband, NFL player Kurt Warner. The foundation seeks to promote Christian values and to bless those who are struggling.

    I received this book free in exchange for my honest review

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 23, 2011

    Very Open and Honest

    Brenda Warner, wife of football legend Kurt Warner, hasn't always led an easy life. From growing up on a farm in Iowa, spending time as a Marine in Japan, have a special needs child to having her first marriage end in divorce, Brenda's life has been filled with more trials than many will face in a lifetime. Brenda also stood by her man as his football career took many twists and turns eventually landing them in Arizona. Written as a memoir, One Call Away, shares Brenda's story; the highs, the lows and everything in between.

    I was impressed with how open Brenda was in this book, from sharing her true feelings to telling stories about getting caught in an "intimate act" with Kurt on her parents couch. Some of these stories are definitely not ones I would share with my friends, much less the millions of people who will read this book! It is amazing to see how God has worked in Brenda's life and in her marriage. This book is definitely encouraging and eye-opening about some of the things the Warners have dealt with, I really enjoyed reading it.

    Disclaimer: A complimentary copy of this book was provided for review by Thomas Nelson Publishers. All thoughts are my own and I was not required to post a positive review.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 23, 2011

    Wonderful

    One Call Away is written by Brenda Warner with Jennifer Schuchmann. From the very first page, I couldnt' put down this book. I think I read this book faster than any other book that I've ever read. To know that someone else has hit that point in their life where everything just seems to be going crazy, makes you feel like you're not alone.
    When I first got this book, I was anxious to read it. It was a rather thick book, so at first I thought "Oh this is going to be boring". I was mistaken. Turn for turn, each page is filled with emotion and truth. It's a great read and I can't believe how little time it took me to read it. I was hooked.
    The book is well written and it keeps your attention the entire time. No need to look back in the book for something that you missed or don't understand. I strongly recommend this book, especially to those who need some encouragement to know that you're not alone when it comes to the world bringing you down

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 10, 2013

    What is this about?

    Answer to Callie

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 28, 2012

    Highly Recommended

    Great read. After seeing Brenda at the "Woman of Faith' conference in Pittsburgh, Pa. I decided to order her book, I couldn't put it down. If you think you have problems and need a boost of your faith, read this book and get on your knees. Your problems may seem minute!!! Loved it.

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  • Posted September 6, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    First of all, thank the Publisher, Thomas Nelson for sending me

    First of all, thank the Publisher, Thomas Nelson for sending me this book to review. All opinion stated here is solely mine.



    What I like about this book is Brenda's unbreakable spirit of facing the challenges in life. I know she is just a normal human being. The, she is also prone to weakness of a human being.



    At times she could be self-centered like the time when her parents pass away, and everything seems to be focus on her. And her controlling nature about Kurt. All these are understandable. Let the person who have not sin cast the first stone is what I say.



    I like the way she was being open in this book but putting in those negative stuffs about herself though anyone would have known that it will arouse some negative feelings from readers.



    Love the photos.



    What I dislike about this book is that it was rather long winded about Kurt's career. It kinda put me off a bit as am not really into the sport.



    Overall, I am giving this book four stars out of 5 stars as I really liked this book.






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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 15, 2012

    Each Chapter Keeps You Cheering Brenda On!

    There was no money, no glamour and at times no hope but Brenda Warner's book is a well written journey of watching one's faith grow even when you don't know if there is any faith left. Her humble beginnings and loving home obviously gave her the foundation to grow on and tenacity to carry on during so many heartbreaking situations. This book is an easy read and kept me spellbound from chapter to chapter!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 20, 2012

    A must read

    Great book! So sincere and honest. Read it you want regret it!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 25, 2011

    Great book!

    Loved this one. Highly recommend!

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  • Posted December 25, 2011

    What a story!

    I really admire the Warner's. Neither had things easy but they really achieved great things. They are an inspiring family & they represent Iowa well! God bless them.

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  • Posted October 27, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    One Call Away

    The author is just twenty-two when she receives the call from her then husband Neil - their son Zack 's breathing doesn't sound quite right and he is concerned. Rushing home she finds her four month old son in distress, the healthy, happy baby that she had kissed good-bye just hours before is in trouble. Serious trouble. This isn't the first time in her young life however, that an unexpected telephone call contained bad news . nor would it be the last. One Call Away is the inspiring life story by Brenda Warner. At times it seems impossible that one woman could face a seemingly endless supply of gut-wrenching tragedies. And there have been many, many losses. But this isn't a story of despair and retreat nor one of self-pity. Instead, readers are given an opportunity to walk beside this courageous Christian mother as she finds the strength to face first one challenge and then another. There are perhaps three types of people who suffer significant losses. The first group never seems quite able to move past the loss, instead choosing to define their lives by the loss. Then there are those who seem to recover, only to embrace their old ways as if nothing has happened. Those in the third groups however, are the survivors. Not only to they bounce back, but manage to come back as better people. Brenda Warner is a survivor. Her story will resonate with those who have suffered disappointment, despair, and lost. Her secret? She knows that God is simply one call away. Her story is riveting, honest and easy to read, her words will make you look at your own life in a different way.

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  • Posted October 25, 2011

    Kathleen v

    If you read First Things First don't waste you money on this book. Both books are almost identical. Almost the same story

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 12, 2011

    A Great Read

    My most recent read is "One Call Away - Answering Life's Challenges with Unshakable Faith" by Brenda Warner. This book is a memoir of Brenda's life. She has faced many trials and tribulations during her life from farm girl, serving in the military, facing divorce, marrying a high-profile NFL star and landing in the media spotlight, to facing the challenges of having a special needs child while mothering a whole crew of kids. Brenda reminds us that while we will face many challenges, trials and tribulations in this world, God is one call away! Those are words we need to hear.
    While I am not a football fan and I only knew who Kurt Warner was by name, I still enjoyed reading this book. Thousands of women have enjoyed listening to Brenda Warner share her testimony at Women of Faith conferences. Now that message can be shared with even more women who pick up this book. I loved reading the personal stories and faith encounters that have helped Brenda Warner walk through her difficult times with grace. She reminds us that our God is ever present and always faithful. I would highly recommend this book to anyone, football fan or not.

    This review is my own. I was not paid to write this review even thought the book was provided to me.

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  • Posted October 12, 2011

    Holding on to Faith

    One Call Away is a fantastic book. I wouldn't say that it is a book that would fit in a genre called "inspiration" although it certainly contains inspiring moments. I would not say it fits into a "faith" section because although the book is all about how Brenda's faith has shaped her life, it really isn't about faith in general. This is just a fantastic telling of a life that has experienced many ups and downs and how her faith has supported her and pulled her through some of her toughest moments.

    I love that she tells it plain and simple. She does not seem to sugar-coat anything. She does not add any fluff. This is life, straight to the point. That's is what makes it inspiring to me. Although no one could argue against the fact that the Warner family now lives in a position of blessing and celebrity, their lives have been surprisingly normal and sometimes even downright tragic.

    I would definitely recommend this book to anyone just looking for a good read. You do not have to be looking for a book to inspire, although this one certainly will. It is simply a good read of an amazing set of circumstances that God has aligned in this family's life so that they could find themselves where they are today.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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