For those that follow this blog, you might remember her name from her previous book: Van een andere planeet. I have review of it here.
This book is the long-awaited follow up to that previous book. This book chronicles her life now 18 years later since her previous book. In the blurb on the back she says that growth in people with autism (her preference, although in the book she states that she also likes identity first language now), is possible, and it shows.
In her previous book she showed you how she struggled before her diagnose and after. It felt like she was still coming to terms with her diagnose and was hoping that this book would be different, would show a different side of Mrs. Dumortier, would show that she wasn’t stagnant and like all human beings had shown the world that she was capable of growth and it delivered.
This book is much more upbeat than it’s predecessor. It shows how she can cope now with things with which she previously struggled and how she found solutions for it. She shows you how her life with her children is like and how she manages that.
Trigger warning: animal cruelty (not from the book, from personal memory. Skip this paragraph if need to). To be honest, I had a hard time reading the previous book. It showed a woman that was still searching for herself and very bluntly told you how she was struggling and didn’t find a way out of that struggle. It felt like watching a mouse drown in a large bucket of water (sorry for this analogy, but this is a memory I have of something cruel my parents did with a life mouse my dog caught). In this book, she shows the growth and it is a much more upbeat, much more pleasant read.
This is a book that all parents of autistics should read. Yes, change is possible but it comes at it’s own pace and eventually we are able to learn. Some things we can do and more efficient, some things take time.
This book shows that although she was struggling, she took care of her self and didn’t punish herself to harshly. She learned to let herself get healed during a busy week for example and not plan to much in one week, something I also don’t try to do, but something I also had to learn.
One thing I love by reading these kinds of books is to get a mirror shoved up your face and to see where you still struggle yourself or how other autistics have done things.
This is a must read for all autistics and parents everywhere.
Thanks you, Mrs Dumortier for giving me the opportunity to take a glance in your past life and to show me how you have grown. I hope we get to meet someday. It would be awesome.
This book is only available in dutch, but I sincerely hope both books will be translated in the near future.
If you want to buy a copy, you can buy a copy here.