Monday, June 22, 2015

Hannah's Gift: Lessons from a Life Fully Lived By Maria Housden - A Book Review

Good Morning,

I started writing a book review for a book that I recently read and I got about half way through if not more and decided the let it be for awhile because I think the book itself could be a little controversial as well as my thoughts on the book so I decided to hold off for awhile. But no fear I have been flying through books and therefore I have a back up ready to go.

I will tell you right off the bat if you read this book you will sob hysterically, I speak from experience. None the less I actually think it is a book worth reading and I am about to tell you why.

Here is the synopsis from 

Every once in a while a book comes along that can change your life–a book so special, it is destined not just to be read but to be cherished, to be passed from one reader to another as a precious gift. Filled with wisdom and grace, tears and laughter, Hannah’s Gift is one such book. Within these pages Maria Housden shares the transformative lessons in living she received from her three-year-old daughter Hannah, who brought courage, honesty, and joy to her struggle with cancer. 

During the last year of her short life, Hannah was fearless in the way she faced death–and irrepressibly joyful in the way she approached living. The little girl who wore her favorite red Mary Janes into the operating room changed the life of everyone who came in contact with her. Now, in a book that preserves Hannah’s indomitable spirit, Maria Housden offers the gift of her daughter’s last year to all of us. 

In a lyrically told narrative, both moving and unforgettable, Housden recounts Hannah’s battle with cancer in simple, straightforward language that transcends grief and fear to become a celebration. From Hannah’s story emerge five profound lessons–of truth, joy, faith, compassion, and wonder–that have the power to change our lives. 

During her illness Hannah showed how we can truly live in the moment and break free from lives suffocated by too many unlived joys. Even more memorable is the message Hannah delivered after her death to those she loved–a message of hope for anyone faced with the deepest questions of life and death.

Hannah’s Gift nourishes the soul with an ageless wisdom all the more invaluable for having come from someone so young. A remarkable story, remarkably told, it will bring comfort to anyone touched by loss, and renewed faith in the 
power of love.

Closing her eyes and extending her arms, Hannah began to dance. Oblivious to everything but the shoes on her feet, she skipped and clicked across the floor, twirling in circles, faster and faster. There was something about her pure joy and the defiant nobility of the red shoes that caught everyone’s attention....

The true measure of a life is not its length but the fullness with which it is lived.

I'm not going to lie I don't have a clue where I got this book from and when I picked up up out of the box of books that I have here I knew it was going to be trouble. Its a really quick read, I read it in a couple of hours and let me tell you.. while reading it I literally felt my heart breaking. 

I considered taking a picture the other night while reading it because it was almost comical.. Jason was sound asleep curled up beside me and I was sitting in bed with my book light hysterically sobbing, I kid you not. In the end I decided that I should be thankful I was alone in my ridiculousness. 

After reading the above to paragraphs you are already thinking "why would I read this book?" but you really should. This book is raw and real and takes you insides a families struggles that maybe we could never relate to and might also sadly hit too close to home for you. There is no sugar coating the bad things that happen to this family but there are lessons to be taken from how they band together to deal. 

I have to say I admire the honesty of this family, they never lied to their son about his sisters condition nor did they lie to Hannah who was only 3 about her condition being fatal and the things she was about to face. As parents I'm sure it was their first instinct to protect Hannah and their son Will from the harsh realities of their life but in the end they decided on honesty, they decided Hannah deserved to live her time here on earth knowing it would soon end and that Will deserved to make the most of every moment he had with Hannah, just as they were. 

Although the book is narrated by the mother and therefore her perspective of their lives at this time Hannah was the most amazing presence, for such a young child she handled every obstacle thrown her with will elegance, class and maybe a little bit of sass. This child was wise beyond her years and left an unimaginable impression on all of those who were lucky enough to meet her in her short time here on earth. 

Hannah's death was a tragedy, an unspeakable loss that sadly too many parents face. The book not only depicts the struggle of Hannah's cancer diagnosis, her battle and death but also the real struggle her parents endured after losing her. The how can I live without her, the on the floor in a ball crying until you run out of the tears, and the I can do this because as long as I keep her alive in my heart and home she'll always be with me. 

Is the book sad, hell yes! Will you cry your face off? I would pretty much bet on it. Will you finish the book feeling you are so glad you read it? Absolutely. 

This book was so eloquently written and what a strong woman Maria Housden is for writing it, I finished this book feeling so much admiration for the amazing woman and mother she is. You have no idea what you would do when faced with a situation like this and I pray none of you are.. but this woman did the best she knew how and I think she was incredible!

I hope you guys had a great weekend! Thank you as always for stopping by! I am going to try and get some posts written early this week because we are heading home for a long weekend this weekend and I couldn't be more excited!!!! I am sooo over this freakin' job and a little southern livin' is exactly what this girl needs! 

 photo Signature_zps30f5eb11.png

No comments:

Post a Comment