My Wonderful Wobbly World

Non-Fiction - Autobiography
267 Pages
Reviewed on 01/12/2018
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Author Biography

I was born in London U.K. in 1932. During my birth the forceps slipped, resulting in brain damage to the motor control nerves of my right side and causing total body spasticity. However, my intellect was not damaged. Throughout my life the two adversaries, controllable brain and semi-controllable body, always needed to be balanced. After several years of work and study I became a Chartered Production Engineer. In 1971 I emigrated to Australia and became a senior examiner in the Australian Patent Office. I have also been a hypno-therapist, personal counsellor, masseur, tarot card reader, art gallery curator and public speaker. My autobiography – ‘My Wonderful Wobbly Life’ – illustrates the rhyme: “He started to sing as he tackled the thing that couldn’t be done – but he DID IT!” In it I chronicle my journey from useless to useful, hopefully with humour and joie de vivre. I pay tribute to friends who gave me help only when it was asked for. That helped me become the man I am today.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Kimberlee J Benart for Readers' Favorite

My Wonderful Wobbly World is the autobiography of Charles Irwin, an Englishman born in 1932 with serious physical handicaps resulting from a traumatic birth. He tells his impressive story through chapters which address different phases, issues and themes of his professional and personal life, and the lessons he learned from them. In the process, he comments on his experiences with the medical, educational, and religious institutions of the day. This is a man who, as a child, was told he’d never be able to walk or ride a bike without falling, but who went on to become a Chartered Engineer, technician, businessman, Boy Scout, Freemason, Rotarian, spiritualist, and an advocate for “living life as it was meant to be lived - with LOVE, but without fear.”

I enjoyed My Wonderful Wobbly World on several levels. First, Irwin’s description of his childhood and youth in depression-era and World War II England was fascinating and entertaining. Second, his accounts of how he found ways to do things himself, to get past the limitations of his hands and feet; the freedom he felt in simply learning a way to tie his shoes with one hand or to ride a bike, let alone eventually being able to accomplish complex technical work, were moving. We take for granted the technological assistance that physically challenged people have available today. Third, his outlook on life: the importance of happiness, health, responsibility, spirituality, and listening to the voice within us. “Everything needs to be nurtured” (including yourself) “if it is to reach its full potential,” he writes. Irwin's style is casual, easy to read, and frank. An inspirational, informative, and entertaining read.