“I knew I would write a book about my son. Just not this book…”– Rick Prashaw
“I don’t remember exactly when I decided or knew for sure that I was writing a book. I suspect that my late son, Adam, my co-author, knows better than I do. What I do remember is being in my Kanata, Ottawa condo, in my office which had been my kid`s bedroom in high school years, spending most days on my late son’s Facebook page, trying to stay connected to him and really to survive, because I was barely treading water in the early days of those 90 to 100-foot tidal waves of grief ripping me in the aftermath of the shipwreck soon after Adam’s drowning and death.
…I had thought that a book on a Catholic priest marrying, becoming instant step-dad to three kids, and then to this new, irrepressible child of my own with the peculiar Rebecca Adam name, this hockey goalie—fun, courageous, indomitable character—was a good tale to tell. That initial book idea was anchored on letters I wrote yearly on her birthday to capture the madcap adventures and lifelines of the previous 12 months.
Then Adam showed up, a F-bomb FB post (Chapter 3) that announces who he is and who he’s been since his birth in Sudbury in 1993. A remarkable transgender journey moves into high gear. The seizures got worse. A fatal seizure when I am in California on holidays, a drowning, an unimaginable weekend vigil with many, surprising tender mercies, a heart recipient bursting into our lives.
Insane news, all of it. Yes, a different book, with a different title, a title with a boy’s name.”
—Excerpt from Rick Prashaw’s blog “The Story Behind ‘Soar, Adam, Soar’”
“Soar, Adam, Soar” is Rick Prashaw’s inspiring account of his son Adam, born Rebecca Danielle Adam Prashaw, and his remarkable journey to becoming the ‘boy in the mirror’.
Rick retells Adam’s story and his own experience alongside his son’s own words documented in a trove of transparent and direct social media posts, from early childhood, coming out first as a lesbian and then as a man alongside his battle with epilepsy. The book chronicles Adam’s drive to define himself, his joyful spirit, and his love of life, which continues to conquer all. After a tragic accident cut his life short, Adam, a registered organ donor, left the most important legacy: he saved four lives.
Rick is my partner’s uncle. I will never forget the morning he came walking down our stairs, his face covered in tears of joy having just received the news from the Trillium Gift of Life Network that Adam’s own heart had successfully saved another man’s life. Adam would live on through this gift.
Adam and Rick’s story inspired me to create QueerVoices—a community gathering to celebrate the experiences and voices of local queer organizers, artists, and writers. Queer Voices will take place at Wild Heart Healing Arts following the book launch of “Soar, Adam, Soar” at the Picton Library on April 6th.
Wild Heart was founded by Megan Marie Gates and I with the intention of creating a multi-functional space that not only offered yoga classes and alternative therapies, but would be home to fully inclusive community gatherings, hosting stories like Adam’s, that need to be told. We’re honoured to provide a space where this story can be told, openly and respectfully.
Written with contributions from Rick Prashaw