Saturday, August 27, 2011
The River of Forgetting by Jane Rowan REVIEW
People don’t make up things like that for fun. That’s what Jane’s therapist tells her when Jane reports fragmentary memories from her childhood that hints at sexual abuse. A busy, successful scientist, Jane at first fights the implications, but as flashbacks assail her, she must tackle the tough questions of her childhood, with no easy answers. With help from a gifted, unconventional therapist as well as writing, movement, and drawing, Jane taps into her own aliveness and comes to terms with both her parents’ love and their betrayal. This powerful, deeply personal memoir invites the reader behind the closed doors of the therapist’s office and into the author’s journal and her very body. Jane’s voice is honest, at time is breaktakingly so. Her uncanny ability to describe emotions from the inside will give charity and courage to others on the journey from trauma and healing.
When I first started reading this book I didn’t know if I wanted or could continue with it because it hits a bit close to home. But thankfully it wasn’t the father it was another family member. But against my own judgment I continued and finished reading it. And I must say; I am glad I did. This true story is obviously full of heartbreaking memories and stories and encounters with her father and mother as well as her memories of her sister Suzie she never gets to see because she was sent away because she had Down syndrome. I couldn’t imagine not ever seeing one of my sisters. We are all very close and very close with our parents. That’s another thing; I couldn’t fathom my mother ever covering for my dad. On one hand I understand if a mother is behaving a certain way because the father is the source of income, keeping food on the table and bills paid, roof over your kids head and clothes on their back. So it is a tough spot to be in. But even then, there are organizations that help. It’s a parents/guardians job to keep that child(s) safe from everything. So even though the mother or father thinks he or she is doing their job as the parent by keeping a home for the kids by allowing their child(s) to stay in that environment, maybe that parent should sit the child(s) down and talk with them and see where their minds are at.
What Jane Rowan and other people like her have gone through is horrific and I feel for them. Man or woman, whoever has gone through sexual abuse need not feel bad, ashamed, embarrassed, at fault in anyway, or anything else for that matter. This book is not a “how to heal from sexual abuse” but it may give you the insight and strength you need to move on and get help and get the person(s) who did it to you or to that person you know that it happened to. You won’t feel so alone after reading this.
I highly recommend this book, I couldn’t put it down.
I received this book from Pump Up Your Book for review.
Author Biography: Jane Rowan is a New England poet and writer. After teaching science and three decades in a private college, she retired for pursue the creative life. She is the author of numerous articles and the self-help booklet Caring for the Child Within- A Manual for Grownups, available throughout her website www.janerowan.com