At forty-two years old, Valerie Giglio was heading for an even brighter future as both a successful lawyer and professional vocalist with two CDs to her name, when out of nowhere, she suffered a brain stem stroke that ravaged her life and caused her world to spin out of control. Completely paralyzed on one side, confined to a wheelchair, her singing voice stolen from her at the height of her career, Valerie was devastated. But with fierce determination and fortitude, and the support of her loving family and a wonderful healthcare team, Valerie faced down every setback and obstacle in her path. Overcoming paralysis and regaining her singing voice, she returned to the stage just one year later. The story of this woman’s miraculous journey allows you to travel with Valerie on her path to an extraordinary recovery. Singing In My Own Key is a story of hope and faith that will leave you deeply inspired.
Giglio, a Boston-area singer and lawyer, details the year she spent recovering from a devastating brain stem stroke she suffered at age 42, which caused her musical and legal worlds “to spin out of control.” Balancing chapters on the details of her recovery—including prolonged hospital stays, confinement to a wheelchair, and “relentless” dizziness—with others on developments in both of her careers, Giglio more than meets her goal of showing readers that “miracles happen.” She deftly explores the “surreal” experience of having a stroke: “Inside you’re screaming to get out, but you can’t move.” She also describes the various grueling physical and mental therapies she endured in order to meet her goal of returning to performing in a year—a goal she accomplished with the help of supportive family and friends. She is guided by the words of her mentor, legendary jazz performer Al Vega, who shows her that “sometimes we have to take a chance and keep going no matter what obstacles we face.” Deciding that “the only limitations were the ones I put on myself,” Giglio hopes her story and struggles will help others “reach for the stars and dream big.” (BookLife)