Book Review: “My Glory Was I Had Such Friends a Memoir” by Amy Silverstein
Amy Silverstein received a new heart when was 25 years old, and for the next 26 years she beat the odds, surpassing all expectations for a transplant recipient. Then a single jolt of dizziness warned her that something was terribly wrong; her heart was rapidly giving out.
Amy must decide to either hope that she will be lucky enough to receive another donor heart or carry on one breathless step at a time, thankful she outlasted the years she had been promised when she had the transplant. With either decision, months of agonizing pain, nausea, sleepless nights and hospitalization would be in her immediate future.
What Amy didn’t expect was a tribe of close friends who spanned all walks of her life to step in and take control. It only took a simple spreadsheet, a few phone calls and a group of determined women who adore Amy to organize a schedule that made sure she would not be alone during her hospital stay.
“My Glory Was I Had Such Friends” is, at its core, a book about friendship. Silverstein spares no words honestly describing the endless emotions she felt when friends from work, childhood and her community walked alongside her as she waited for a heart. She acknowledges that she felt anger, guilt and frustration at times, knowing that no one around her understood the personal trauma she was facing. Yet at the end of the day, Silverstein remarks how each woman brought a different perspective and gift to the hospital room.
As different as these friends were, they all had common goals that brought them together: a love for Amy and a desperate desire for her to get a new heart. As a result, friendships deepened in courage and perseverance, and a new understanding was born for what it means to say, “I’m there” — and truly mean it.