Strap on your bike helmet. It’s a beautiful day for a joyride!
Fast Eddie, developmentally disabled from starvation as an infant, teaches us that the world becomes a playground when you show up for your assignment with an open and happy heart.
A Course in Fun with Fast Eddie
10 WAYS TO TURN LIFE’S JOURNEY INTO A JOYRIDE
This is the story of Eddie Lee, a childhood friend who taught me so many lessons in life. Eddie is better known as Fast Eddie, a nickname that has stuck ever since the town barber of Linden used it to praise the way Eddie whizzed around town on and off his bike. It aptly describes the winning attitude Eddie has fostered no matter what life has thrown his way.
Despite the heartbreaking reality that his starvation as an infant caused his developmental disability, the subsequent judging and bullying he has endured every year of his life, and his demoralizing experiences in the adult foster care system, he has never stopped believing in himself. He is keenly aware that he is as important as everyone else and that he is just as capable of living on his own terms as everyone else.
In spite of his hardships, Eddie’s determination to flourish using the tools in his own special toolbox remains intact. In his own unique way, he has taught many people that the world becomes a playground when you show up for your assignment with an open and happy heart. Eddie inspired me to share with you the story of his life and how he changed mine.
When it seems like the road you’re on is dotted with potholes no matter where you turn, and the journey isn’t as fun as it used to be, it’s time to strap on your bike helmet and fall in line behind a bottle picking, fun-loving guru who can show you a better route. Eddie turned defeat on its head by showing up every day ready to live happily ever after, no matter what.
By borrowing just a few tools from Eddie’s special toolbox, you will find yourself loosening your grip on the handlebars that are keeping you from having the ride of your life.
Lives His Purpose Every Day
Fast Eddie grew up in Carson City, Michigan, and has lived in Flint, Clio, Linden, Highland and Traverse City, where he lives now. While many of us spend our lifetimes finding our true purpose, Fast Eddie has been living his purpose since he was born. He knows it was no accident he was found right when he needed to be, and seemingly against all odds was whisked off to restart his life by a family that wanted and needed him.
Eddie is forever thankful for the good manners his mother taught him. His enthusiasm for experiencing joy throughout his life has inspired so many people to laugh, to give and to appreciate on a whole different level. Eddie witnesses miracles every day, because he is receptive to the belief that everything is a miracle. He continues his daily routine of bike riding in Traverse City, collecting returnable bottles and cans, smiling at babies like he’s running for political office and watching his favorite TV heroes mimic his best moves.
Eddie and Ruby at PEACE Ranch during an experiential learning class
About the Author
Karen Wiand is a first-time author and full-time believer in our personal power to create miracles. She has enjoyed many experiences through her career, first as an art director and producer and later as a residential designer and builder in the Detroit area. Karen embraces learning from her friends with intellectual disabilities through her work with Eddie.
Karen came from a big family in the little town of Carson City, Michigan. She spent her early years fully invested in having fun with her siblings and neighbors, playing hockey until her feet were frozen on their annual rink constructed by their father, sneaking past No Trespassing signs to investigate abandoned barns and houses in a full out search for ghosts, or jumping in the car at a moment’s notice when her dad took them on mystery road trips. Their family home doubled as the neighborhood clubhouse and the door was always open.
The attitude of inclusion instilled by her parents has helped her throughout her life, and she has used those principles to accept and appreciate that every life is precious and every perspective matters. She continues to advocate for and learn from Eddie and his friends, and marvels at how large his family has become.
A Course in Fun with Fast Eddie
“Heartfelt, timely. This book is a beautiful argument for refusing to take life too seriously. There’s something refreshing about unconditional, selfless love. That’s Fast Eddie. He brings a peaceful balance to an increasingly off-kilter world.”
“On Eddie’s daily visits to my store, he usually grabs a cup of coffee, announces, ‘Uncle Tim, I feel great today’ and gives me a big hug. He doesn’t know it, but his hugs are as therapeutic to me as my hugs are to him. Knowing Eddie is a blessing. He serves as a reminder to us all that life is to be enjoyed. A Course in Fun with Fast Eddie is a spectacular account of the power of a person’s positive attitude.”
“An artfully told real life story of suffering and overcoming woven in a colorful fabric of adventure and friendship. Fast Eddie takes us from the worst of the world to the best, giving the keys to resilience along the way. At the ranch, Eddie found a peace and friendship in both horse and human. His heart is as large as his smile.”
Get on my list!
Get my latest blog posts in your Inbox and be the first to know the dates of upcoming events.