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Amy Susan Crohn

Book Interview: Dying to Live:

Running backwards through cancer, Lupus and chronic illness

Amy Susan Crohn author of Dying to Live
Amy Susan Crohn author of Dying to Live

Interview with Amy Susan Crohn about: Dying to Live

Charles Author’s Promoter:

Please welcome Amy Susan Crohn author of Dying to Live: Running backwards through cancer, Lupus and chronic illness. HI Amy, how are you today?

Amy Susan Crohn:

I’m well. Thank you.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

It is not often that we get to interview someone that has fought back from the clutches of death. Your book covers a great deal of information. Can you tell us a little about where it all began?

Amy Susan Crohn:

I felt the need to write the book to continue to heal. It was a four-year journey during which I discovered a great deal about myself and, in particular, how childhood maltreatment can lead to adult physical illness.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

You mention in the book description that your childhood was fraught with dysfunction. Can you tell us a little about how this features in your book?

Amy Susan Crohn:

The abuse I suffered as a young child was emotional and physical neglect. I learned about studies like the CDC’s ACE Study that directly correlates how child abuse and/or neglect can increase the chances of someone coming down with a serious physical or mental illness as an adult. I feel this is so important for doctors and patients and caregivers to include in their assessment of any new patient.

Amy Susan Crohn:

There are 10 ACE Survey questions. In my opinion, they should be included in every physicians intake questionnaire.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

Wow, so from a young age you have been fighting adversity. Has this made you stronger as a person?

Amy Susan Crohn:

I want to say yes but I am still struck with every day situations and illnesses, including remnants of cancer treatment and Lupus, that I don’t always feel so strong although others say I am.
I am wiser and therefore, stronger.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

Your memoir from what I understand is a way of helping others, I believe that the ability to go beyond one’s self and help others shows strength of character. How would you say, your book will help others?

Amy Susan Crohn:

My story will enable the reader to see themselves or a family member or, if a physician is reading it, a new take on how to address critically ill patients. All of us are a patient at some point in our lives. The fact that I tell a story with a rich history of family will resonate with readers.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

Can you walk us through the timeline of the book, highlighting the major moments?

Dying To Live by Author Susan Crohn
Dying To Live by Author Susan Crohn

Amy Susan Crohn:

I wrote my book in the present and the past so the reader will be experiencing exactly what I was going through. I start with learning that I was diagnosed with both Stage 4B cancer and Lupus at the same time at age 36. The ensuing period of treatment over nearly three years caused me to be semi-conscious many times. This made me think of all the things that happened in my childhood – in a dreamlike state and most of my learning took place then.

It doesn’t get all neatly tied up in a bow but it explains my experience, offering what I learned along the way, and how I continue to live with chronic illness in a way that doesn’t stop me from accomplishing my goals.

Of course, being declared DOA(Dead on Arrival) upon my first hospital arrival was traumatic and life-changing. Once revived, I was able to recall what happened when I was ‘dead.’

Charles Author’s Promoter:

Do we get to learn more about this moment?

Amy Susan Crohn:

Yes. I describe that experience and others.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

You not only had a rewarding career as a reporter but you also started your own successful business do readers get a peek into how you managed to achieve all this whilst battling your maladies?

Amy Susan Crohn:

What they learn is that I lost everything and how I battled back to regain some of my work – work that defined me for so many years and work that I loved. Writing this book is a pinnacle for me and I expect to write a sequel.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

So we can expect a lot more fight from you, Amy?

Amy Susan Crohn:

Yes. That’s what I do and feel like I’ve been doing all my life. But it is a learning life and if that is the one take away readers can get from my book it’s that we are here to fully experience and learn from both our good and bad experiences. One of my favorite quotes is: “It is not enough to stare up the steps, we must step up the stairs.” I won’t stop stepping up the stairs no matter how hard it may be.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

I notice you are also quite outspoken about the effects of childhood abuse in relation to medical illnesses. How are you using your book and life story to improve the medical system?

Amy Susan Crohn:

I am making my book available to those in the medical community and trying to schedule speaking engagements with doctors and doctors-to-be. I tell those who buy my book that they should buy two – one for themselves ad one for their doctor.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

You cover a lot of important things walking the reader through your life story. What should a reader take most to heart when reading your book?

Amy Susan Crohn:

That we are all here for a purpose and finding our purpose or mission is critical to, not only our own well-being, but to improve society at large. That’s our job as part of the human race. Sounds trite but I believe in it.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

What is Amy Susan Crohn’s purpose?

Amy Susan Crohn:

To educate patients, caregivers, and physicians about The Adverse Childhood Effect (ACE) Study and make sure they are looking at what happened in one’s past BEFORE they became ill with a dis-ease. And I write dis-ease rather than disease for a reason. When we are not at ease, something is awry and doctors need to hear us.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

Does diagnosing the cause help in the treatment? How?

Amy Susan Crohn:

We can never know if an illness is brought on randomly or through events that happened in our childhood. But ACE survey studies show that 86% of Americans score at least a 1 or more and that puts them at a higher risk of developing critical illness. I hope that doctors who are armed with this information can pre-empt or interrupt the dis-ease by being aware of the real biological markers that abused children possess.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

So the intention is to not only assist once the dis-ease is there but specifically to catch the dis-ease early. Will you be targeting pediatricians at all?

Amy Susan Crohn:

I hope to. My story is going to be included in the October issue of the Dallas/Fort Worth edition of CHILD magazine. I’ve been featured on one doctor’s local television show. It’s a process and one that I must undertake while also taking care of my own health.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

Your book title Dying to Live: Running backwards through cancer, lupus and chronic illness. Does “running backwards” hold any particular significance?

 Amy Susan Crohn:

Yes, it does. My feeling is that we get the diagnosis and then we have to backtrack to treat it and also prevent it from happening again. Therefore, it’s the first time we take a look back, to our childhood per se, so we are literally approaching illness in a backwards fashion in my opinion. And I felt like that’s what I was doing – running backwards through it all.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

Your book also helps people learn to deal with their emotions; specifically fear. How does the book achieve this?

Amy Susan Crohn:

Ah, fear! It’s the one constant when you are stricken with a potentially fatal illness. I offer some stories and ideas of how I, personally, handled the fear and hope that these explanations will help others cope, too.

Amy Susan Crohn:

I am still afraid.
Not afraid of dying but afraid of the pain of potential treatments and tests as they come up.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

I believe we all are at times — afraid. So how do you handle fear?

Amy Susan Crohn:

Breathing and good meds. But, seriously, it is a daily checking in of what I describe in my book as my Statue. I envision myself as a cement statue each morning and if a limb is broken off, I take better care of myself that day. If it’s wobbling back and forth, I know I’m shaky and may not set out to accomplish all the things on my never-ending ‘to do list. When I was slammed with both cancer and Lupus, my Statue was dust.
So it’s a visualization technique that works for me.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

You recently lost your brother, a hard thing to go through. Whilst offering my condolences and wishing he rest in peace. I must ask, how has this effected your drive to help others?

Amy Susan Crohn:

It has stretched my reach beyond my initial target audience.My brother’s individual pain overcame him. I am in deep mourning and still trying to make sense of it all. I believe my sequel’s title will be something like: FIGHTING TO LIVE: When does the pain become too much?

Charles Author’s Promoter:

Your drive to share and help others from your own experiences has left me in awe, so much so I just placed an order for your book on Amazon.

Amy Susan Crohn:

Wow. Well thank you! I hope through my own efforts I can reach a large audience. And I appreciate opportunities like this interview to help get my message out there. Thank you.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

I would like to thank you profusely for sharing your message with me and our readers. I truly believe your book has a lot to teach us and as others have put it, it is a unique ride that can give others hope. Amy is there anything else you would like to share with our readers?

Amy Susan Crohn:

Just keep stepping up those stairs. And find the funny in every day. It’s always there – somewhere.

Charles Author’s Promoter:

Thank you for joining us today Amy, readers wanting to know more about Amy and her book can use the comments section to post questions and we will endeavour to get the answers.

 

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