Monday, May 13, 2019

The Friend Zone by Abby Jimenez & The Story It Inspired Me To Tell

I had received a review copy of the The Friend Zone by Abby Jimenez from my friends at Forever publishing, which I was so thankful for because at first glance it looked to be a novel I might enjoy. After seeing some early rave reviews for the novel, I quickly moved it up my to be read schedule. With an unexpected day off from work (thanks Houston floods), I sat down to start it. In less than 24 hours I had read it cover to cover. If you have not heard about this story, below is the synopsis.

The Friend Zone by Abby Jimenez

To be published: June 11, 2019
About the book: Kristen Petersen doesn't do drama, will fight to the death for her friends, and has no room in her life for guys who just don't get her. She's also keeping a big secret: facing a medically necessary procedure that will make it impossible for her to have children.

Planning her best friend's wedding is bittersweet for Kristen--especially when she meets the best man, Josh Copeland. He's funny, sexy, never offended by her mile-wide streak of sarcasm, and always one chicken enchilada ahead of her hangry. Even her dog, Stuntman Mike, adores him. The only catch: Josh wants a big family someday. Kristen knows he'd be better off with someone else, but as their attraction grows, it's harder and harder to keep him at arm's length.

The Friend Zone will have you laughing one moment and grabbing for tissues the next as it tackles the realities of infertility and loss with wit, heart, and a lot of sass. []
I was warned to have tissues near by while reading, but couldn't help but think: Why? Surely this story can't be THAT much of a tear jerker for me. Boy was I wrong. Not only did this book bring about the tears, but it also touched on a very personal, very emotional part of my own story. One that inspired me to share it on my Instagram stories after I finished reading it.

The amount of messages I received in response to my personal confessions surprised me. I had no idea so many others were feeling and understanding my own struggles with such a similar issue. I knew immediately I wanted to dig deeper with those thoughts here on my blog. So, here's my story that was inspired by this story.

Grief is the feeling we hold inside ourselves over the loss of something that's meaningful to us. 

I know that feeling of grief all too well since I am a motherless daughter and have been for 15 years. I never truly empathized with women who were grieving over lost children, or the reality of never being able to carry a child, because I had never walked in those shoes. It's still a topic I feel very strongly about because I do know women in my own life who have to endure those struggles, and still are enduring those pains. Reading this novel about the main character Kristen, and her own personal story about coming to terms with the thought that she may never carry her own child due to medical issues, struck a chord with me. Something in this particular story spoke to me and had me thinking about the choices I've made in my own life have led me to a very similar feeling of loss.

Because of the choices I've made, I am grieving the loss of ever becoming a mother myself.

Now I realize this is not something that has happened to me. I chose the path I chose. I am where I am today, without children of my own, because of reasons in my past. I am completely aware of that. I do not place blame on anyone, or anything else. But I'm starting to realize now that I am still allowed to grieve for a future I thought I'd have, but am not currently living.

Growing up I always saw myself as a mother. People always told me I had "motherly" instincts. Caring for, and loving others, just came naturally. I still value these qualities in myself today, and truly believe it's why I have taken the profession of being a teacher. When someone asks me, "Why don't you have kids? Do you just not want them?", I find myself sometimes agreeing because it's just easier to lie than tell the truth.

The truth is, I wanted to be a mother. 

In the author's note of this novel, Abby Jimenez wrote about the main character's happy ending: "It was about her recognizing that she wasn't defined by her ability to have children, and that her worth went beyond the state of her uterus." That one line stood out to me, as if Abby herself was speaking right to me. The choices I've made in my own life, that led me to not becoming a mother like I'd hoped to be, do not define me. There is more to who I am, as a woman, than just becoming a mother. Yes, this saddens me that I will never know the feeling of creating a life and carrying it, to watch it grow and evolve into a human being. That is part of my path I must live with.

I'm also recognizing that it is ok to grieve that loss. Feel what I feel, but not let it detour me. 

If you're reading this, and you see something similar in my story, I hope you don't feel alone in your grief. Know that it is ok to be sad for the future you thought you'd have. Know that it is ok to be angry with yourself for not making other choices. But also know that you ARE worth more than what you thought you'd become. I've always believed books come into our lives in just the right moments, and this book here, definitely presented itself to me when I needed it most.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Ginger! I love your review! I have an ARC for this book and was very hessitant to even start it. I'm also one who doesn't have kids because of medical issues and I was really worried if this would be a trigger for me.

    I'm definitely reading this book this week and share my thoughta about it!


Hello Readers! Once you've typed up that comment that I oh so appreciate, please click "notify me" in the bottom right corner so that you don't miss my reply! Thanks, xo.

Site Design by Designer Blogs