Friday, May 3, 2013

Book Review: FreeFall to Fly: A Breathtaking Journey Toward a Life of Meaning by Rebekah Lyons

I was really drawn to Freefall to Fly at first. Being a mother to six small children of my own, I can understand what it is like to go through a big move and also journey through anxiety. 

However, at her lowest in the book she writes,
"I must give in.
I"ll do what I swore I would never do.
I'll numb out.
We woke up the next morning after yet another restless night, and I told Gabe (her husband) my resolution: I would take antidepressants to get me through. I was no longer able to cope and ready to do whatever I needed to do."

I guess I have a different opinion of anti-depressants. I dealt with undiagnosed post-partum depression for nine months after the birth of our youngest child, and contrary to what Rebekah considers, the anti-depressant I was finally prescribed when I summoned up the courage to visit the doctor didn’t numb me out. In fact, it helped me get back on track and get back to who I really was. 

A few pages further and Rebekah shares her breakthrough. One night she prays to God in desperation and she is immediately cured. While I don’t doubt this for a minute because I have seen God work amazing miracles in short time frames, for others God’s timing works differently. I think that she would have served her audience better if she had made mention of that. Otherwise it becomes misleading. It comes off as though if you just pray hard enough God will instantly take away your depression.

The one thing that drew me into the book further to keep reading though was Rebekah’s passion for women finding and using their God-given gifts. Her passion for this really resonates with me. She is very encouraging in this aspect, especially to young mothers. She writes: "... the displacement of a mother's purpose (beyond child rearing) becomes a huge loss to our communities. If women aren't empowered to cultivate their uniqueness, we all suffer the loss of beauty, creativity, and resourcefulness they were meant to inject into the world."

Another quote: "But if God has buried in each of us good gifts, doesn't it follow that He desires for us to find and use them? To ignore these gifts or fail to develop them, it seems, would be to bury our treasure..."

Would I recommend it? Yes and no. I love the parts where she encourages women to grab hold of their gifts and use them. There are parts of her recovery story that bother me, and I would hesitate to recommend this book to someone who is really struggling with undiagnosed depression.

Disclosure: I received this advanced reading copy via Handlebar Publishing as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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