A touching memoir of a life lived in faith.
In this short work, Bowles tells the moving story of her life in order “to encourage someone else.” The reader will indeed be encouraged by her positive attitude and sense of direction in the midst of hard travails. The book opens with Bowles’ childhood as the daughter of a single mother, with her father having died in an accident before her birth. Her mother mismanaged the household and suffered from debilitating mental illness. Nevertheless, the help, example and encouragement of other relatives gave Bowles direction and purpose in her youth. Against hard odds she earned a nursing degree and then decided to enter the residential-care field. Despite having no capital, she managed to obtain a house, and then survived and persevered for two years with almost no clientele. At last, she began to succeed in her chosen profession, but more setbacks were to come. Bowles was diagnosed with breast cancer, and, in addition to a mastectomy, her physicians suggested that her ovaries should be removed as a preventative measure. In a hair-raising climax to the author’s life story, Bowles explains how she was led to take a pregnancy test the very night before her surgery, and learned that she was, in fact, with child. Throughout Bowles’ tale, she clearly centers her narrative upon her personal faith in God. Though the reader will certainly come to see Bowles as a woman marked by perseverance, drive and courage, she takes no credit for her survival of hardship or the things she has accomplished in life. The reader is left, however, wishing that Bowles took more opportunity to flesh out that faith. Though references are made to certain individuals who made a difference in her faith life, it would be intriguing to hear a more in-depth discussion of her personal experience with the faith community and, not just how her faith has sustained her, but how that faith developed and matured over time. Bowles’ story is a meaningful and instructive one. It deserves a few pages more to make it complete.
Endearing testimony that leaves the reader hoping for more.