Guide Limping through Life: A Farm Boy’s Polio Memoir

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Preview — Limping through Life by Jerry Apps.

Limping through Life: A Farm Boy's Polio Memoir

Families throughout the United States lived in fear of polio throughout the late s and early s, and now the disease had come to our farm. I can still remember that short winter day and the chilly night when I first showed symptoms. My life would never be the same.

Lily limping 2

By the s, quaranti Families throughout the United States lived in fear of polio throughout the late s and early s, and now the disease had come to our farm. By the s, quarantines and school closings were becoming common, as isolation was one of the only ways to fight the disease. In his most personal book, Jerry Apps, who contracted polio at age twelve, reveals how the disease affected him physically and emotionally, profoundly influencing his education, military service, and family life and setting him on the path to becoming a professional writer.

A hardworking farm kid who loved playing softball, young Jerry Apps would have to make many adjustments and meet many challenges after that winter night he was stricken with a debilitating, sometimes fatal illness. In Limping through Life he explores the ways his world changed after polio and pays tribute to those family members, teachers, and friends who helped him along the way.

Hardcover , pages. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Limping through Life , please sign up. Lists with This Book. Nov 20, Linda rated it really liked it. Saw this at the library yesterday when I went to pick up book on hold that continues the story of Code Name Verity. This was a wonderful read. It's suffused with warmth, wit and everything that makes Wisconsin Wisconsin. I've known Jerry Apps' name for years and served on the Madison Newspapers' Credit Union board with his son Steve; but before this book I really didn't know much about Jerry himself.

The "limping" in the title refers to A Saw this at the library yesterday when I went to pick up book on hold that continues the story of Code Name Verity. The "limping" in the title refers to Apps' bout with polio. I'm younger than Apps by a little bit but old enough to remember the polio scare when I was little. I was lucky to be at the right age to be able to get vaccinated when Salk made his discovery.

Apps, who contracted polio when he was 12, mentioned that it struck more boys than girls but the only two people I know who had polio as kids are both women. One woman told me how she used to come to Madison in the summer as a child — but she spent her time alone in a room at the old UW-Hospital.

Apps was luckier because he spent his time at home and, to a surprising extent, it was his country surroundings that spurred his earliest attempts at recovering his strengths. A book filled with lessons and stories that would make a perfect Christmas gift for everyone on your list. Jun 16, Jeff rated it liked it Shelves: I've always enjoyed reading Jerry Apps, and this book is no exception. Once he gets into high school and college I started to get bored with the book I'm more interested in what life was like on the farm than on his journey to become a writer. Sti I've always enjoyed reading Jerry Apps, and this book is no exception.

Still, I liked the book overall and am still continuing to search for similar writers. Apr 16, Angela rated it liked it. This is an easy read. I found it interesting because our library hosted Jerry Apps for an author talk once and I am familiar with the town he grew up in. It was also interesting to learn about the effects of polio and his going off to college and breaking away from the family farm. Great for those looking for book with a hometown feel with an easy pace.

Dec 05, Sara rated it liked it.

Limping through life : a farm boy's polio memoir / Jerry Apps - Details - Trove

I so much wanted to like this book more than I did, since the subject matter very much appeals to me. But the writing style was a bit too dull and dry. Still a good read overall. I've already started his more recent The Quiet Season: Remembering Country Winters, which seems to have a bit more life to it. Apr 14, Amy rated it really liked it. Another wonderful book by Jerry that focuses on his life starting at age 12 when he contracted polio. It was interesting to read about his life, and it makes me respect him more for opening up about the depression and negative thoughts he had, and the amazing people in his life who helped him and boost his self confidence.


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Dec 30, Janet Gasser rated it liked it. I enjoyed and appreciated the first part of the book, where the author told of his struggle with polio, how his family handled it, and how it affected his life, both negatively and positively. The latter part of the book was like reading someone's resume.

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Mar 14, Jeff Thiel rated it liked it Shelves: True to the author's philosophy, this is written not to awe or befuddle the reader with fanciful language and elaborate description. The author still manages to relate his experience and convey the description of his life from being stricken with polio and navigating life after and beyond.

There is no doubt that farm kids will recognize themselves and their families in Mr. Apps has drawn on a career as a steward of rural life and writing to share a story that is uniquely his own but echoes the lives of farm kids certainly across the Midwest. Although we may no longer attend one room school houses or fear polio, we still share many of the experiences and the journey to appreciating our roots that he writes about.

Limping Through Life is an easy and enjoyable read for those with appreciation for where they've come from and how that shapes where they've been and where they will go.

Sep 02, Patricia rated it liked it. This is an autobiography of Jerry Apps a native Wisconite. Jerry got the feared disease, polio. I remember that time though I am younger. Growing up on a farm in central Wisconsin, Jerry and his younger brothers tended to the animals and fields. Hard labor was an essential part of living, so when twelve-year-old Apps became ill in January of , his future was threatened. The aftermath of polio could ruin a person, rendering it impossible to make a living or care for a family, much less enjoy the normal activities of youth.

Jerry faced these possibilities and fought them with determination. Apps explains that two forms of the disease can afflict the body. One type incapacitates the respiratory system and kills; the other paralyzes the body to varying degrees. Apps was afflicted by polio in his right leg. He describes the brutal early stages of his recovery, explaining both the psychological and physical toll.

A service of Post-Polio Health International

Polio kept him out of the classroom, but he still managed to graduate from the eighth grade in the midst of his struggle. He later elaborates on his writing career, which was an inspiring success. Fortitude and spirit are evident on every page as he recounts the difficulty of regaining use of his leg and accepting the fact that post-polio syndrome would cause a permanent limp.

His doctor said he was fortunate to be alive, yet Apps reiterates that the long-term effects have not subsided, and this changes how he sees the world: Apps credits his father with a tough approach toward rehabilitation, which involved forcing his disabled body to do farming chores.