Finding me—and Them: Stories of Assimilation is a collection of ten stories. They are autobiographical. They are nonfiction. They are fiction based on fact. Each story tells the author’s life as an individual with or (fictional) without a disability. All of them find the author. They show different phases and challenges in his life, from rehabilitating from a head injury at age five to learning the logistics of an after-life. In ways that co-mingle genres, the stories in my book are related. There are central themes concurrent in all of them. Many of the stories are written from the perspective of someone growing up with an ambiguous disability. A theme is how I found the world to perceive me. Family is a theme. Wandering, exploration, the search for identity, are central themes in my stories.
My book is learning to live (physically different). It’s learning to love. It’s learning what faith can do and what’s offered in worlds we can’t see.
In Finding me and Them, Michael Amram shows his versatility as a writer, combining stories of fact and fiction, often with poetic lyricism, to tell the story of his life, a life he says is influenced by the disabilities caused when a distracted teen driver hit the then 5-year-old boy.
In reality, it’s a life that reflects Amram’s abilities — his ability to see joy and sorrow in life, his ability to observe the ironies of life, his ability to appreciate that “overcoming” takes many forms.
Amram blends humor and poignancy to engage readers as he portrays life’s simplest interactions as meaningful. Never preachy, each of the 10 stories in this collection teaches us something about living the fullest life we can.
- Ellen Weingart, editor