Every Story Is a Miracle: Revised Edition of This Is Me
by Gary Wilson
Authors' Tranquility Press

"GO FOR IT. But, if you do not reach it, do not get upset. You still have to live with yourself and others."

In a comprehensive biographical rendition, Wilson delivers one coherent message: pour as much energy into life as you can because the show must go on. From the outset, there is a strong understanding that it's not so much about what happens to us as it is how we respond to life events. More specifically, the author emphasizes that everyone has a story that is a byproduct of literally every single decision made from the time they're on the clock (birth). The sheer existence of man is a miracle in itself. This mantra carries over throughout the narrative as audiences follow Wilson's life and excursions, covering everything from childhood to career and, of course, love.

The story starts on January 9th, 1964, with a scene that describes Wilson's birth and the nuances of being a twin. Born two and a half months premature, the babies are not expected to live to the next day, so their mother has them baptized as "Baby A" and "Baby B." What ensues is a struggle many mothers deal with in the face of an absentee father, even if he may initially be physically present. The intrigue lies in getting to see the mother's hardships from the perspective of a young Wilson and the chaos that can occur when there is not a strong support system, which, for Wilson and his three brothers, culminates with a house fire that sets off a chain reaction and a direct path to the orphanage and foster care. Being in the system and seeing a family break apart despite a mother's best efforts is heartbreaking. At the same time, Wilson's journey moves forward. And although he finds himself in a nice environment with caring people, his yearning to be near his bedroom window is symbolic of the escape hatch that will always be on his mind as a result of his childhood trauma.

The author's life normalizes as best as can be expected, with him joining his father at work and being proud of being the boss' son. Much of his book is an expression of Wilson's search for identity, which takes a major hit when his brother decides to sever ties because "he does not want us to be twins anymore." This move is not because of a rift in the twins' relationship but because the author's brother no longer wishes to be the son of their adoptive mother. However, for Wilson, the relationship with his adoptive mother is marked by mutual love, whether the times are easy or rough.

Whether it's sparking his romantic flame with Laura or being part of the audio/visual club at school, the key adolescent and teenage years are filled with a strong support system. This, ultimately, generates an opportunity for Wilson to be recruited by the Navy. His journey takes him to approximately ten different European countries, such as Spain, England, Italy, and many more in just a few months and offers unique opportunities like being on a missile cruiser—the notorious USS Harry E Yarnell. Using his "TOP SECRET" clearance, Wilson finds himself working at the Naval War College and making difficult decisions to uphold the integrity of his title.

When Wilson circles back to the present day and sheds light on his numerous professional roles and his passion for helping his town as an EMS volunteer, readers also become privy to the tumult in his home life. Rather than allow his family to crack, however, Wilson identifies a strong need to be present for his wife and family and demonstrates a commitment to do whatever it takes to achieve that balance. Overall, the peaks and valleys of Wilson's life are many and thoroughly chronicled within this book. In many ways, they embody the miracle that is every man.

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