Beyond Disability: A Family’s Quest for Ordinary
Raw and real, Warrior Angel is an intimate portrayal of the Dunnigan family’s quest for “ordinary.” Pulling back the veil of disability, the family’s journey offers insights and understanding about the inherent complexities of daily life. With a son labelled disabled, the family is committed to fostering a “good life” for Matthew. Standing against ingrained societal tendencies that patronize and marginalize people with disabilities, they reject segregated approaches. The family is determined to nurture capacity, belonging and responsibility, so that Matthew may flourish. As for all citizens, life offers no guarantees. Fiercely independent-minded, Matthew doggedly pursues ordinary life opportunities, where abundant risks, struggles and rewards await. The book’s diverse collection of vignettes spill indelible memories gathered over three decades. Life in the Matt Lane is never dull, as these stories tell. Perpetual twists, turns and derailments are simply part of their journey. On a broader level the book weaves two tales. The first speaks to Matt’s journey, the textured world he lives in and the challenges he encounters. The second is his family’s story. Both tales are told from the mother’s perspective. With candour and sensitivity, the book exudes the elements of an ordinary life: unconditional love, vulnerability, angst and hope.