From the beginning, Lauri sensed something was different about her fourth daughter, Farema. She would make excuses for Farema’s odd behavior – her lack of eye contact, her dislike of physical contact, her inability or refusal to talk. Lauri so badly wanted Farema to be normal and to be like her older sisters, yet Farema was not. And Lauri could not rid herself of the feeling that something was not quite right.
This books chronicles Lauri’s struggle as she fought to accept Farema’s differences and the long road that eventually led to Farema’s diagnosis with autism. Autism is fairly well known these days, but this was not the case back in the 80’s when Lauri’s daughter was young. There were many misconceptions about autism, including that it was caused by “Refrigerator Mother: a genuine lack of maternal warmth.” This thought understandably horrified her, as Lauri was the farthest thing from unloving.
This is just one of the examples in which Lauri opens up her heart and shares her story with intriguing honesty. She writes about her desire and constant efforts to keep her daughter engaged with friendships and activities. From the highs (when Farema found her perfect fit with ice skating and later her own job) to the lows (“the veins” and night terrors and hallucinations), the obvious love and devotion Lauri has for her daughter is evident on every page of this book.
This book really moved me and I found myself in tears more than once as I read it. I could sense the anguish and love as Lauri poured out her family’s story, along with her own journey of self reflection and growth in her walk with the Lord. Her testimony of how the Lord is always faithful no matter how difficult things become is inspiring. This book will touch something in every mother’s heart and is truly a story worth reading.
You can buy Lonely Girl, Gracious God on Amazon.com