Pam Thorson is a licensed practical nurse, an author, and a caregiver. She began writing for her local college newspaper. She later authored a number of devotionals for her church. In 2008, Pam wrote Song in the Night, the true account of her son Kevin’s devastating accident, the fight to keep doctors from removing life support, and his subsequent journey back home.
Pam and her husband, Aaron, educated all five of their children at home. They have been married forty-one years and have five grown children and two granddaughters.
What sparked your initial writing journey?
I have loved writing since my teen years. In high school I wrote a short story for an English assignment, and my teacher said it was good enough to be published. That lit the fire.
But I put writing on the shelf for over thirty years while I married and raised a beautiful family. In 1997, our lives took a devastating turn when our middle son, Kevin, suffered a high spinal cord injury that nearly killed him and paralyzed him from the neck down.
The miraculous events that followed ran parallel to the pain of adjusting to our new lives. Friends suggested that I write down the events surrounding Kevin’s fall and God’s work in us. From their urging came my first book, Song in the Night.
God sometimes sends us down an unexpected path in life, one that ultimately draws us closer to Him. Have you experienced such a “Divine Detour”?
It would definitely have to be Kevin’s accident, although in retrospect, my life has been a series of divine detours. That fateful day in 1997, we were headed in a totally different direction, deeply involved in our church and praying about joining our daughter and son-in-law as missionaries.
The next day, we had “detoured” into the world of disability and caregiving.
Let’s talk about your new book, a devotional entitled Out from the Shadows (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas, March 2014). Please tell us about it.
Out from the Shadows was a natural step beyond Song in the Night. It’s a collection of thirty-one devotions that pull back the veil on caregiving to reveal the struggles and joys of caring for others. It’s crafted to appeal to both men and women, to speak to a wide range of issues confronting today’s caregiver.
You wrote Out from the Shadows to encourage others, but God often uses our work to teach us something too. What did you learn (about life, faith, and/or even yourself) in the process of writing this book?
The premise of the book is based on my own struggle to live my faith in the light. This one sentence says it all: No place is so dark, no shadow so deep, that God can’t find us. In the seventeen years since Kevin’s injury, I’ve learned that life is often lived in the shadows. We’ve lived many years in the shadow of Kevin’s disability, in the shadows of what might have been, in the valley of the shadow of death.
In the long journey it’s been tempting at times to fall into the shadows of my faith. Writing this book helped me to clarify what I believe, to step into the light, and to realize the incredible way in which God has sustained and comforted us all these years.
Please tell us about Kevin, his love for music, and his website.
Kevin has loved music since he was a toddler. His entire life was directed toward playing Christian music in ministry to others. That made his paralysis especially painful, knowing he could never play his beloved guitar again.
Since he can move his whole body to one degree or another now, he was able to teach himself web design and build a website devoted to Christian music. He is the founder and senior editor of CMADDICT.com. He works with artists, recording companies, publicists, and contributors around the United States to bring great music, reviews, press releases, and interviews to music lovers everywhere.
It’s a beautiful site. I write a weekly devotional under the title Slightly Obsessed each Wednesday for the site.
It took years for me to understand why God allowed Kevin’s ability to play music for Him to be silenced. One of my favorite devotions in the book is entitled “Incomparable” and addresses this painful place in my heart.
A few fun questions…
What is your favorite comfort food and why?
Almost anything Southern. Although I have lived most of my life in the Pacific Northwest, I was born in the South and spent my early years there. My mother was an amazing cook, and she cooked wonderful, comforting Southern meals.
Re-creating one of her meals transports me to a happy place.
This website features musicians as well as writers. If you were a song, what kind of song would you be?
Since most of my life has been spent fighting for others, my first inclination is to say an anthem. Something intense, with a strong beat in answer to the clarion call God has put on my heart to serve Him with every fiber of my being.
But in reality, I just want to be a worship song, a song of praise to my King.
What Bible verse best speaks to your faith journey?
Psalm 77:6 in the NASB states: I will remember my song in the night. For me, that says it all. In my first book, I write about the experience of Paul and Silas in the prison. Acts 16 relates how they were arrested for the sake of the gospel, beaten and fastened in the stocks in the innermost part of the prison.
In the bowels of the earth they lay wounded and imprisoned. What did they do in that dark place? The Bible tells us that they prayed and sang hymns of praise to their God. God answered with an earthquake that shook the foundations of the prison, unfastened everyone’s chains, and broke open every door into freedom’s light.
God has called our family on a detour through deep shadows. There, I’ve been called to sing in the night.
I’m a dog lover. Please tell us about your pets, if any, or your favorite pet as a child.
I love cats and horses. Growing up, my favorite cat was one born with cerebral palsy. She was very intelligent, but she couldn’t keep her balance. We named her Crash. I loved that cat and took her on as my special project. Looking back now, I can see how even then God had given me a caregiver’s heart.
Thanks, Pam! It’s nice to have you as a guest at DivineDetour.
Thanks, Kathy. I’m honored to be here!
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For more information about Pam, visit her website.
To purchase Out from the Shadows, logon to:
Another wonderful interview, Kathy. Most heartwarming.
Pam, you’ve given me a needed boost this morning to go out into this world knowing that God is always with me.
Bless you both, you strong, beautiful ladies.
Elaine, thanks for introducing me to Pam. She and Kevin are an inspiration.
[…] Pamela Thorson ~ Out from the Shadows […]
A fabulous, moving interview. Thank you, Pamela and Kathy!
Thank you, Tammy!
Thanks, Elaine and Tamara! I love your comments. You’ve encouraged me, as well.
Thanks again, Kathy, for inviting me to be here today. Blessings to you.
Pam, it has been a pleasure to get to know you this week. I hope you’ll visit again.