Nate is currently publishing his second book, Dying to Hang with the Boys, a memoir that explores the ways in which gender transition, identity, physical disability, addiction and recovery, and mental health all intersect and complicate each other. It looks at many of the complex medical, legal, and social issues involving gender identity, mental health, and disability and brings the reader into the experience.
Running on a Mind Rewired, Nate's first book, is published under his former female name, Jennifer, and has been used in high school and college curricula and served as a teaching tool in hospitals and treatment centers around the country.
She was the only girl in the boys’ high school hockey league, fighting to keep playing in spite of concussions and other serious injuries. By age seventeen, she was battling her second round of severe depression, this time while hooked on crack. A near-death experience—her interrupted suicide—would haunt her through multiple unsuccessful attempts at drug and alcohol treatment. Then, Jennifer Cannon realized she had to find her own path to recovery.
I never wanted to destroy my life, damage my brain, or come so close to killing myself that I’d wake up strangling on a psych ward floor. . . . But I did. And in the end I was the only one who could save me from myself.
I’d love to say that life after drugs and alcohol is easy. Chemical dependency isn’t always as simple as going to rehab and coming out fixed, though. Nor are head injuries and concussions things you can safely play through.
Sometimes the damage is permanent. But you have to keep running.
Written with unflinching honesty, Running on a Mind Rewired is at times harrowing, yet ultimately hopeful. Jennifer’s story will inspire others to persevere in the face of what may seem to be overwhelming odds.