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Welcome...

to the official website of Siobhán Mungovan; Author, Public Speaker & Spina Bifida Warrior!!!

Here you will find links to all Siobhán's activities, from her very successful book 'My Journey with Spina Bifida: Me and My Backbone', to her inspirational talks at health and educational conferences around the country. It offers insight into the girl behind the condition and how to never underestimate human potential.

Spina bifida, from the latin meaning "split spine", is a birth defect where there is an incomplete closing of the backbone and membranes around the spinal cord up to 28 days after conception. There are three main types of spina bifida: occulta, meningocele, and myelomeningocele. Occulta has no or only mild signs. Meningocele typically causes mild problems. Myelomeningocele, also known as open spina bifida, is the most severe form. Associated problems include poor ability to walk, problems with bladder or bowel control, hydrocephalus and a tethered spinal cord.

Having the most severe form of spina bifida has not been easy but Siobhán has never let this define her. In her book, she shares her highs and lows with you the reader, yet it always finishes on a positive note. Just like her motto and her general outlook, to "Keep Smiling Always".

€12.00 Buy Book

About the Author

Siobhán Mungovan | Author, Public Speaker & Spina Bifida Warrior

Siobhán Mungovan was born on July 30, 1986 and is a native of Connolly in County Clare on the West coast of Ireland.

Siobhán was born with spina bifida and although living with this condition has brought her to some lows it has also helped her soar to new heights. She knows her limits but throughout her life she has tried to break free of the limitations that come with spina bifida at every turn, determined not to let the condition define her as a person.

Known as Báns or Shiv to her friends, Siobhán grew up in a small village in the rural and scenic setting of West Clare. She comes from a farming family and has spent most of her childhood immersed in the great outdoors. The Mungovan clan consist of Siobhán’s dad Noel, mam Geraldine, older brother Shane, and younger brother Conor.

She went to school in Ennis, County Clare and now lives there. Having left school she went on to work with Clare County Council in 2006 and is a member of their planning department. Since joining the local authority she hasn’t looked back since.

Music has always been her one true passion and even though her lung function has deteriorated in recent years she continues to enjoy this hobby and is a proud member of the Ennis Gospel Choir, who she calls her second family.

A fashionista at heart Siobhán always dresses to impress but living with scoliosis means that she often has to get creative. She enjoys letting her imaginative eye for clothes lose as she sees how pieces can come together for that perfect look which will flatter her unusual curves and elongate her small stature.

It has always been a dream of Siobhán’s to put pen to paper and to tell her story own story giving people a flavour of what it has been like for her living with Spina Bifida. On her journey she has fought to overcome each and every curve by living day to day according to her motto “Keep Smiling Always”.


About the Co-author

Carol Byrne | Co-author & Award Winning Journalist

Carol Byrne is originally from Blackwater, Ardnacrusha, but now lives in Ennis, County Clare where she works as a senior reporter at The Clare Champion newspaper.

She specialises in the Arts, the East Clare region and general news. She is also the newspaper’s court reporter and in this capacity she has won four national print media awards from the Law Society of Ireland for her court reporting. Two of these were for her coverage of the controversial Dr Paschal Carmody trial.

She initially studied English, Music and Media Studies at Mary Immaculate College where she specialised in Media Studies and Music and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Limerick. It was here that she developed her interest in journalism and in sharing others’ stories.

She began her reporting career interning at The Limerick Leader where she got a taste for deadlines and the buzz of a busy newsroom before pursuing a Masters degree in Journalism at NUI Galway. Upon graduating in 2006 with honours she returned to her home county to take up an internship at Clare FM in Ennis. From there she moved on to The Clare Champion newspaper, where she has been employed as a senior reporter for the past eight years.

She was delighted to join Siobhán on her journey to write her memoir and embraced this challenge with open arms. Speaking of her co-author she said, “Siobhán has been an inspiration to me, she has let me in to her amazing life and she has invigorated my own outlook on life. I have no doubt that all those who read her story will have the same experience”.

Welcome to Siobhán's Press Section

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My Book

Siobhán Mungovan, Author & Carol Byrne, Co-author My Journey with Spina Bifida: Me and My Backbone

Have you ever wondered what it might be like to live with a severely debilitating medical condition, whilst trying to live the life of normal 29 year old young Irish woman? My Journey with Spina Bifida: Me and My Backbone is the coming-of-age story of Siobhán Mungovan, a tenacious country girl from Clare whose motto in life is “Keep Smiling Always”. The book is written with Clare-based, award-winning, journalist Carol Byrne.

Through her comedic turn of phrase, we learn it is not all that different to anybody else’s life. What is different is Siobhán’s unique ability to grab life with both hands and live in the moment. This outlook on life has helped her achieve things that seemed impossible to many. She has truly broken the stereotype.

The day of Siobhán’s birth should have been a joyous occasion, but a diagnosis of Spina Bifida left her parents devastated. The prognosis offered little hope; Siobhán would never walk, she was most likely brain damaged and, they as parents, should not expect her to lead a full long life.

However, in a miraculous turn of events, Siobhán defied all these odds and took her first steps aided by the family dog “Major”. Using him for support she was able to develop and maintain her extraordinary walk and she hasn’t stopped moving since. Life in size one shoes hasn’t been easy but Siobhán has taken some giant steps along her journey. She has been confronted with scoliosis, hydrocephalus, renal failure, dialysis, coping with depression, and a decline in lung function, in addition to the everyday issues that any young woman growing up in Ireland faces.

My Journey with Spina Bifida: Me and My Backbone celebrates life no matter what hand you are dealt, it is about facing down challenges, friendships and family bonds, finding positivity in the darkest of places, and most importantly it’s about never forgetting that hope and fresh opportunities only lie around the next corner.

Contact Siobhán

"I'm here for a good time not a long time".


                               
                               
                               
                               

See Pricing Below

My book is available in two formats...

So, you can choose to buy the printed book or save a bit of money by purchasing the Kindle version on Amazon! For those of you who don't have a Kindle, there is a free app for download that will allow you to read the book on any device!! So you have no excuse; order either copy now at the links below!!!

Kindle Version

$9.16 ⁄ digital version

Printed Book

€12 ⁄ printed book
  • Printed book posted directly to you (postage not incl).
  • Signed by the author.
  • Visit my shop now to order your copy!

Read all of those great reviews

If you enjoy the book, please don't hesitate to drop me a line & let me know what you think!

1

BOOK REVIEWS

READ WHAT OTHERS HAVE TO SAY ABOUT ME & MY BOOK!!!

2
  • This uplifting book focuses not on illness and disability, but on living life to the full in the circumstances you find yourself in. It is an easy, satisfying and touching read.

    - Sally Vance
  • Siobhán has been through some harrowing experiences but she tells it from a witty perspective. Even in hospital, she and her mother try to find fun in things, to lift the mood. Siobhán is a very bubbly, positive type of person. She really is always laughing and smiling. That is one of her catchphrases. Keep smiling always.

    - Carol Byrne
  • Mungovan’s psyche is given solid voice from the very beginning through the use of a deceptively simple writing style; Mungovan and Byrne enable the reader to navigate this book with ease.

    - Laura Mulcahy
3
  • Mungovan’s psyche is given solid voice from the very beginning through the use of a deceptively simple writing style; Mungovan and Byrne enable the reader to navigate this book with ease.

    - Laura Mulcahy
  • This uplifting book focuses not on illness and disability, but on living life to the full in the circumstances you find yourself in. It is an easy, satisfying and touching read.

    - Sally Vance
  • The book is the coming-of-age story of Siobhán Mungovan, a tenacious country girl from Clare whose motto in life is “Keep Smiling Always”. The book is written with Clare-based, award-winning journalist Carol Byrne.

    - Munster Rugby
4
  • Teenagers in both libraries were inspired by Siobhan’s zest for life and her constant determination that nothing will hold her back. They were particularly interested in hearing about her experiences during the life stage they themselves are at and how she coped with life as a teenager both physically and emotionally. The many questions at each presentation were testament to their interest in Siobhán’s talk from start to finish.

    - Clare County Library
  • Siobhán has been through some harrowing experiences but she tells it from a witty perspective. Even in hospital, she and her mother try to find fun in things, to lift the mood. Siobhán is a very bubbly, positive type of person. She really is always laughing and smiling. That is one of her catchphrases. Keep smiling always.

    - Carol Byrne
  • Through her comedic turn of phrase, we learn it is not all that different to anybody else’s life. What is different is Siobhán’s unique ability to grab life with both hands and live in the moment.

    - ilovelimerick.ie
5
  • Mungovan’s psyche is given solid voice from the very beginning through the use of a deceptively simple writing style; Mungovan and Byrne enable the reader to navigate this book with ease.

    - Laura Mulcahy
  • The book is the coming-of-age story of Siobhán Mungovan, a tenacious country girl from Clare whose motto in life is “Keep Smiling Always”. The book is written with Clare-based, award-winning journalist Carol Byrne.

    - Munster Rugby
  • Although Siobhán has had more than 20 operations, she is neither resentful or bitter.

    - Peter O’Connell
6
  • The book is the coming-of-age story of Siobhán Mungovan, a tenacious country girl from Clare whose motto in life is “Keep Smiling Always”. The book is written with Clare-based, award-winning journalist Carol Byrne.

    - Munster Rugby
  • Mungovan’s psyche is given solid voice from the very beginning through the use of a deceptively simple writing style; Mungovan and Byrne enable the reader to navigate this book with ease.

    - Laura Mulcahy
  • Teenagers in both libraries were inspired by Siobhan’s zest for life and her constant determination that nothing will hold her back. They were particularly interested in hearing about her experiences during the life stage they themselves are at and how she coped with life as a teenager both physically and emotionally. The many questions at each presentation were testament to their interest in Siobhán’s talk from start to finish.

    - Clare County Library
7
  • Through her comedic turn of phrase, we learn it is not all that different to anybody else’s life. What is different is Siobhán’s unique ability to grab life with both hands and live in the moment.

    - ilovelimerick.ie
  • Siobhán has been through some harrowing experiences but she tells it from a witty perspective. Even in hospital, she and her mother try to find fun in things, to lift the mood. Siobhán is a very bubbly, positive type of person. She really is always laughing and smiling. That is one of her catchphrases. Keep smiling always.

    - Carol Byrne
  • Although Siobhán has had more than 20 operations, she is neither resentful or bitter.

    - Peter O’Connell
8
  • Siobhán has been through some harrowing experiences but she tells it from a witty perspective. Even in hospital, she and her mother try to find fun in things, to lift the mood. Siobhán is a very bubbly, positive type of person. She really is always laughing and smiling. That is one of her catchphrases. Keep smiling always.

    - Carol Byrne
  • Although Siobhán has had more than 20 operations, she is neither resentful or bitter.

    - Peter O’Connell
  • Mungovan’s psyche is given solid voice from the very beginning through the use of a deceptively simple writing style; Mungovan and Byrne enable the reader to navigate this book with ease.

    - Laura Mulcahy
9
  • This uplifting book focuses not on illness and disability, but on living life to the full in the circumstances you find yourself in. It is an easy, satisfying and touching read.

    - Sally Vance
  • Teenagers in both libraries were inspired by Siobhan’s zest for life and her constant determination that nothing will hold her back. They were particularly interested in hearing about her experiences during the life stage they themselves are at and how she coped with life as a teenager both physically and emotionally. The many questions at each presentation were testament to their interest in Siobhán’s talk from start to finish.

    - Clare County Library
  • Siobhán has been through some harrowing experiences but she tells it from a witty perspective. Even in hospital, she and her mother try to find fun in things, to lift the mood. Siobhán is a very bubbly, positive type of person. She really is always laughing and smiling. That is one of her catchphrases. Keep smiling always.

    - Carol Byrne
10
  • Siobhán has been through some harrowing experiences but she tells it from a witty perspective. Even in hospital, she and her mother try to find fun in things, to lift the mood. Siobhán is a very bubbly, positive type of person. She really is always laughing and smiling. That is one of her catchphrases. Keep smiling always.

    - Carol Byrne
  • Mungovan’s psyche is given solid voice from the very beginning through the use of a deceptively simple writing style; Mungovan and Byrne enable the reader to navigate this book with ease.

    - Laura Mulcahy
  • Through her comedic turn of phrase, we learn it is not all that different to anybody else’s life. What is different is Siobhán’s unique ability to grab life with both hands and live in the moment.

    - ilovelimerick.ie
11
  • This uplifting book focuses not on illness and disability, but on living life to the full in the circumstances you find yourself in. It is an easy, satisfying and touching read.

    - Sally Vance
  • The book is the coming-of-age story of Siobhán Mungovan, a tenacious country girl from Clare whose motto in life is “Keep Smiling Always”. The book is written with Clare-based, award-winning journalist Carol Byrne.

    - Munster Rugby
  • Teenagers in both libraries were inspired by Siobhan’s zest for life and her constant determination that nothing will hold her back. They were particularly interested in hearing about her experiences during the life stage they themselves are at and how she coped with life as a teenager both physically and emotionally. The many questions at each presentation were testament to their interest in Siobhán’s talk from start to finish.

    - Clare County Library
12
  • Although Siobhán has had more than 20 operations, she is neither resentful or bitter.

    - Peter O’Connell
  • Siobhán has been through some harrowing experiences but she tells it from a witty perspective. Even in hospital, she and her mother try to find fun in things, to lift the mood. Siobhán is a very bubbly, positive type of person. She really is always laughing and smiling. That is one of her catchphrases. Keep smiling always.

    - Carol Byrne
  • Teenagers in both libraries were inspired by Siobhan’s zest for life and her constant determination that nothing will hold her back. They were particularly interested in hearing about her experiences during the life stage they themselves are at and how she coped with life as a teenager both physically and emotionally. The many questions at each presentation were testament to their interest in Siobhán’s talk from start to finish.

    - Clare County Library
13
  • The book is the coming-of-age story of Siobhán Mungovan, a tenacious country girl from Clare whose motto in life is “Keep Smiling Always”. The book is written with Clare-based, award-winning journalist Carol Byrne.

    - Munster Rugby
  • Through her comedic turn of phrase, we learn it is not all that different to anybody else’s life. What is different is Siobhán’s unique ability to grab life with both hands and live in the moment.

    - ilovelimerick.ie
  • Although Siobhán has had more than 20 operations, she is neither resentful or bitter.

    - Peter O’Connell
14
  • Mungovan’s psyche is given solid voice from the very beginning through the use of a deceptively simple writing style; Mungovan and Byrne enable the reader to navigate this book with ease.

    - Laura Mulcahy
  • This uplifting book focuses not on illness and disability, but on living life to the full in the circumstances you find yourself in. It is an easy, satisfying and touching read.

    - Sally Vance
  • Although Siobhán has had more than 20 operations, she is neither resentful or bitter.

    - Peter O’Connell
15
  • Through her comedic turn of phrase, we learn it is not all that different to anybody else’s life. What is different is Siobhán’s unique ability to grab life with both hands and live in the moment.

    - ilovelimerick.ie
  • Although Siobhán has had more than 20 operations, she is neither resentful or bitter.

    - Peter O’Connell
  • Mungovan’s psyche is given solid voice from the very beginning through the use of a deceptively simple writing style; Mungovan and Byrne enable the reader to navigate this book with ease.

    - Laura Mulcahy
16
  • Although Siobhán has had more than 20 operations, she is neither resentful or bitter.

    - Peter O’Connell
  • The book is the coming-of-age story of Siobhán Mungovan, a tenacious country girl from Clare whose motto in life is “Keep Smiling Always”. The book is written with Clare-based, award-winning journalist Carol Byrne.

    - Munster Rugby
  • Mungovan’s psyche is given solid voice from the very beginning through the use of a deceptively simple writing style; Mungovan and Byrne enable the reader to navigate this book with ease.

    - Laura Mulcahy
17
  • Through her comedic turn of phrase, we learn it is not all that different to anybody else’s life. What is different is Siobhán’s unique ability to grab life with both hands and live in the moment.

    - ilovelimerick.ie
  • Siobhán has been through some harrowing experiences but she tells it from a witty perspective. Even in hospital, she and her mother try to find fun in things, to lift the mood. Siobhán is a very bubbly, positive type of person. She really is always laughing and smiling. That is one of her catchphrases. Keep smiling always.

    - Carol Byrne
  • This uplifting book focuses not on illness and disability, but on living life to the full in the circumstances you find yourself in. It is an easy, satisfying and touching read.

    - Sally Vance
18
  • Siobhán has been through some harrowing experiences but she tells it from a witty perspective. Even in hospital, she and her mother try to find fun in things, to lift the mood. Siobhán is a very bubbly, positive type of person. She really is always laughing and smiling. That is one of her catchphrases. Keep smiling always.

    - Carol Byrne
  • This uplifting book focuses not on illness and disability, but on living life to the full in the circumstances you find yourself in. It is an easy, satisfying and touching read.

    - Sally Vance
  • Mungovan’s psyche is given solid voice from the very beginning through the use of a deceptively simple writing style; Mungovan and Byrne enable the reader to navigate this book with ease.

    - Laura Mulcahy
19
  • This uplifting book focuses not on illness and disability, but on living life to the full in the circumstances you find yourself in. It is an easy, satisfying and touching read.

    - Sally Vance
  • Through her comedic turn of phrase, we learn it is not all that different to anybody else’s life. What is different is Siobhán’s unique ability to grab life with both hands and live in the moment.

    - ilovelimerick.ie
  • The book is the coming-of-age story of Siobhán Mungovan, a tenacious country girl from Clare whose motto in life is “Keep Smiling Always”. The book is written with Clare-based, award-winning journalist Carol Byrne.

    - Munster Rugby
20
  • Through her comedic turn of phrase, we learn it is not all that different to anybody else’s life. What is different is Siobhán’s unique ability to grab life with both hands and live in the moment.

    - ilovelimerick.ie
  • Mungovan’s psyche is given solid voice from the very beginning through the use of a deceptively simple writing style; Mungovan and Byrne enable the reader to navigate this book with ease.

    - Laura Mulcahy
  • Siobhán has been through some harrowing experiences but she tells it from a witty perspective. Even in hospital, she and her mother try to find fun in things, to lift the mood. Siobhán is a very bubbly, positive type of person. She really is always laughing and smiling. That is one of her catchphrases. Keep smiling always.

    - Carol Byrne

Please Feel Free to Contact Me At Any Time!!!

For queries on event bookings, Siobhán’s book or just general queries on her experiences with Spina Bifida & associated issues, please contact Siobhán on +353 (0)87 269 0363, contact her on social media or submit the form below:


Contact Siobhán