Amy Julia Becker takes the reader on the deeply personal journal of giving birth to her first child, a daughter who to their surprise has Down Syndrome. A strong Christian, with an equally well educated and devout husband, Amy finds herself in shock over her daughters disability and unsure of what the future will hold for her family. Deep questions of faith and understanding transpire between this couple as they struggle to understand and sort out life. Peter Becker is faster to just except daughter Penny as just Penny, his beautiful daughter, than Amy is. Amy has her minutes of questioning God’s plan for their life, for this child and worries over Penny’s future.
As Amy learns more about Down syndrome, she meets other families in different ages and stages of coping with a disabled child. Amy at first cringes at the thought of feeling pride in a child who has made what was once to her a small accomplishment such as working part time, when she herself is an accomplished academic scholar. How would she find common ground with a daughter who may never accomplish much beyond basic school work? As time goes on and Amy looks at what is life success from a different view, she begins to see the joy and normalcy in Penny. She wakes up one day to find herself just a Mom of a daughter, having moved beyond seeing the disability not the person. Her story ends with the birth of her second child, a son. A family of three welcomes William in a happy, traditional way, complete with proud big sister sharing her excitement in her new roll.
A perfect book for anyone whoever had a sudden life changing event and said, “Why me God, why us.” You don’t have to have a disabled child to find yourself in that category. Amy’s frank thoughts about disability, life trials and acceptance of what you cannot change, reaches beyond coping with a disabled child and transcends into everyday life of hard to answer questions.
I would highly recommend this book for any parent who is facing a life different for their child than they expected, regardless of the disability. This is a book written from the stand point of faith, but does not come off preachy or overly Godly for non-believers. It is a great addition for any church library and would be a good resource for families who wonder what do say and what not to say when a relative gives birth to a special needs child.
About the Author:
Amy Julia Becker writes and speaks frequently on the subjects of faith and disability. A Princeton University and Princeton Theological Seminary graduate, Amy and her family live in Lawrenceville, New Jersey. You may follow the ups and down of everyday life of this Mother of three by reading her blog Thin Places.
Where to Find This Book:
A Good and Perfect Gift is published by Bethany House Publishers and twenty percent of the proceeds from the sale of this book goes to organizations that care for people with disabilities.
A complimentary copy of the book was received for the purpose of review. No other compensation has been received.