Reviewed in the United States on June 22, 2020
I absolutely loved this book, and could relate to it 100%. Even though everyone who faces a medical crisis has different issues, backgrounds, stories, and results, there are definitely some strong commonalities. The way they told their stories touched my heart immensely. Thank you Netgalley (authors, and publishers too) for allowing me to read this free ebook preview. My review is my honest and voluntary.
What makes this book different from others and why should anyone care? This book is different from others because it sheds light on two best friends in two completely different tragic situations, with sons who are exact opposites, however; they are still able to highlight important similarities that touch your heart and teach valuable lessons. Despite the horrifying events that took place, they also shared their moments of humor and finding happiness in the smallest things, and I think that is critical to be able to get through situations like theirs. I think including those small humorous moments and things to be happy about was important because it conveyed the message that it’s ok to laugh a little and be happy during some of the things that come up. You can’t let it swallow you up to the point that all you feel is grief, despair, and hopelessness. They did a great job expressing that in their writing. The authors reveal their feelings, events, reactions, experiences, and situations with raw emotion, information, and lessons learned. Their story is written so well that it is like they are reliving it all over again and you are going through it right alongside them. They also shared information they learned through their experiences. The tips, suggestions, and information they provided are well thought out, accurate, and helpful. When I was reading their facts about questions to ask, things to consider, etc, several times I thought “oh yeah, I hadn’t thought of that, but it would be important,” and “now I can see why something that once seemed so minor would be so important now.” Their experiences at the hospitals and with Drs were also very informative. Even though they were very close friends prior to the medical tragedies, their friendship strengthened and it was obvious how important it is to be able to talk to someone just to be able to get through one more hour, one more day, one more week. The book also served as a reminder to be grateful for the things you have and to not take life for granted. It was a reminder that tragedies can strike anyone at anytime...but that you have to find a way to go on with life and deal with things the best way you can, even if it’s only one day at a time. They gave a strong message that their lives wouldn’t ever be the same again, and even though they were terrified, they both found ways to cope and go on with their new lives as best they could. They cried and wondered “why?” but they didn’t give up, and they found ways to carry on without letting it destroy them. I think their strong message of hope and resilience is so incredibly important, and they did a great job expressing that. They shared their most vulnerable moments of panic, but they didn’t give up.
Plot: Both women have been friends for decades, and the story starts off at Kerri’s 50th birthday party. Shorty thereafter Kerry purchased cough medicine for her son, Cam, because he had been coughing. It was only a cough though, and nothing seemed too serious or out of the ordinary. Soon after he returned from a rugby tournament, their visit to the dr led him to receiving a different medication, and finally resulted in him having to go to the hospital. Little did they know at the time, but his problems were much more serious than just a cough.
Pat (Kerry’s best friend) had been in communication throughout everything Kerry’s family was experiencing and proved to be a very encouraging and helpful best friend. Pat’s son, Dom, was an opposite of Cam, and tended to be more to himself and had faced many challenges at school. Suddenly, her son had a medical tragedy strike him, and it was Kerry who helped Pat in the same way she had done for her. Both medical crises were completely different, but they were both closely related in how their mothers felt, how their lives changed from “normal” to going to regular appointments, fears of “what if,” and questions of “where/how do we go on from here to make it through this? It was terribly hard, but they persevered and found ways to adapt to a life they never expected without letting it destroy them. Yes, this book makes you want to cry at times, but it also makes you want to cheer for them because they found a way to look towards hope!