Monday, March 8, 2010

A sweet story about a mother and daughter

Life on the Refrigerator Door: A Novel in Notes
I read Alice Kuiper's Life on the Refrigerator Door: A Novel in Notes in around 90 minutes one Sunday afternoon (I could have done it much quicker, but a little someone in my house decided that Mommy needed to get something about every 5-10 minutes).

This is a sweet for the most part, bitter at some moments, and overall touching story of a single mother and teenage daughter amidst the hustle and bustle of life.  In the middle of it all, the mother is diagnosed with breast cancer, and life as they know it begins to change.  But still, the two use their notes to each other to say what's on their mind, and at times, the difficult things that they can't bear to say face-to-face.

This story will make you laugh and cry and be angry and uplifted all in its brief pages.  It reminds me of the strength of those I know who are breast cancer survivors, and those whose strength is felt beyond the last moments of their lives.  Even if breast cancer hasn't touched your life, you'll enjoy the banter that happens between mother and daughter.  I can't even count how many times in my life I heard my mother ask me if I had my key, and this story reminded me of those exchanges we have with our parents when they say "I love you" without actually saying the words.

I really enjoy books done in this manner.  For one thing, they're quick reads.  It's the perfect size book to put on some nice music, have a cup of tea, and enjoy being drawn into a world other than your own, even for just a few minutes.

My post wouldn't be complete without a nod to those strong women I know who are breast cancer survivors.  To Annie, Ruth, Bev, and Pat - Your strength, perseverance, compassion and heart are inspiring.  And to two women I never had the privilege of meeting - Francis and Lorraine - Your strength is alive in the spirit of your children and grandchildren whom I dearly love and admire.

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