An inspirational memoir about overcoming life’s challenges through faith.
Daley faced a large number of setbacks in her life, including her controlling husband’s chronic alcohol abuse; a protracted, acrimonious divorce; financial problems; her sister’s cancer and her own chronic health problems. Leaning on the generous mental support of her Cleveland chapter of Al-Anon (“I cringe at the idea of what my life would have turned into if I had not been going to Al-Anon for the last twenty-one years”), Daley took systematic, practical steps to improve her life, from straightening out her family’s finances and drastically reducing debt to exercising regularly by taking long walks in the neighborhood. She became a certified meditation instructor and embraced the ancient Indian health system called ayurveda, implementing meditative practices and healthy eating choices to help her deal with the stress of family life. Drawing on her Christian faith, a study of astrology, the example of Mother Teresa, the mysticism of Deepak Chopra, the teachings of Buddhism, and the serenity of both quilting and yoga, Daley gained the perspective and inner strength she needed to cope with unexpected, dark turns in her life—including a shocking revelation about her stepfather. She narrates her story with a refreshing directness that will especially appeal to those who’ve overcome similar obstacles. The book’s final section deals with the “Seven Spiritual Laws of Yoga,” taking readers into an oddly effective combination of Eastern, chakra-oriented meditation and passages from the New Testament. She demonstrates a thorough understanding of the seven chakras of the human body as a way to access “Heaven on Earth” and achieve a kind of hard-won serenity in day-to-day life. Her book is also well-organized; the spiritual lessons of the second half are strengthened greatly by the weight of the autobiographical portions that precede them.
An effective, plainly told memoir of personal growth through a combination of Christianity and Eastern mysticism.