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Saturday, September 14, 2013

Jane Devin and Elephant Girl

I love this book. Jane Devins's (janedevin.com) memoir is gritty and raw and painful to read. Her life-long struggle to escape poverty, a poverty she would not experience had she not been so badly abused by the adults around her during her childhood, is difficult to witness, even if only in writing.

For most of my life, people who have heard my story have told me I should write a book about it. Maybe some day I will, but I will never be a Jane Devin. As much pain and struggle as I can point to in my own childhood or young adulthood, I could not help but feel grateful that my childhood was not as challenging as Jane's. and I am filled with admiration for her strength and her ability to survive and thrive and pursue her dreams.

And I doubt I will ever have the courage to change my life the way she has changed hers. I have friends who have done it, stripped their life of materialism and walked away from the constraints and comforts of the stereotypic American work life. I think that takes a lot of courage and imagination.

The world may be full of Jane Devins that we never hear from... How I wish they could all find their voice and we could learn to listen for them.