I normally shy away from non-fiction books. But, when I was contacted about reading and reviewing this book, I knew it was a book I was meant to read. My “real job” is at a Middle School, working as a Teachers Assistant in a Special Education classroom. I’ve worked with many students who have Autism and other developmental delays. Somehow I knew this book would find its way into my heart and it truly has. I found myself cheering for this family and I felt such joy at their successes. I loved that this was a book about the whole family’s journey, because truly the whole family learns and grows and is affected by Autism, as well as other developmental delays.
This book follows Mickey and the Carter family from when Mickey was a baby through him becoming an adult. It played out in my mind like a TV show or a movie. I could see this family’s worries about Mickey’s delays, their joy at his first word. The way they could find humor…the excitement, but fear of Mickey going to school, dealing with bullying and significant health issues. Family relationships, their relationships with friends, Mickey’s friendships, Jonathan’s relationship with his brother..how the life that they planned became a new, different plan, still happy, still love, still joy, but different. The Carters had to learn to stand up for themselves and their child. They truly put Mickey’s education and what was best for him before themselves and, though it was hard, were able to find the best resources for him. I could go on and on, but I don’t want to give too much away. I just wish every family that is struggling could read this book. It is filled with hope, through perseverance.
I felt joy for Mom when she found her tribe, her posse. I was filled with pride when Mickey found his voice in front of a crowd. I felt angry over how they were treated one horrible year at Mickey’s school. I laughed at the great humor Mom and Dad shared with Mickey. And, with tears in my eyes, I read the last few pages.
I would love a sequel.
Well done, Carter family. Absolutely 5 stars.
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