This is my review of “Making It Home” by Emily Wierenga.
This book is a sequel of Emily’s earlier memoir, “Atlas Girl”, which I thoroughly enjoyed.
I was eager to read her new book, “Making It Home”, because I love reading memoirs, and enjoyed reading her previous book, “Atlas Girl”. Also, this book is partly about Emily and her husband being foster parents to two boys, and I was wondering if my husband and I should be foster parents, now that we are empty nesters. I have decided, after reading this book, that we should not be foster parents. Instead we are sponsoring several kids from other countries. I am thankful to Emily for helping me make that decision.
Emily writes her memoirs to read like a novel, as if she is telling someone else’s story. Yet that someone is a good friend of hers, but one she gets annoyed with a lot. Although this book is a sequel, Emily still recounts stories from her childhood. She struggles with trying to forgive her dad for not paying enough attention to her growing up. She describes herself as a “lonely homeschooled minister’s daughter”. Being a minister took up most of her dad’s time. Her parents were missionaries, so part of her childhood was spent in Africa, and Emily still feels strong ties there, so she does recount a recent trip back to Africa.
She has been a writer for years, yet she feels dissatisfied by her writing. She thought she would be happy when she published a book. She hasn’t made much money from writing. She isn’t famous. Somehow she is unsettled by this. Should she stop writing? At one point she is so frustrated that she decides, she is done writing for hours and not getting paid for it. Her two boys wear second hand clothes, and play with toys from the thrift store. She tries to write when they are napping or at night when they are sleeping. She keeps thinking she needs to do more than be a mom, but she is not happy struggling to be a mom, a wife, and a writer. Her husband tries to tell her that she is a blessing to him and the kids, and she doesn’t have to be a writer, if it is going to make her cry so much.
The first part of the book is about her dissatisfaction with her life. It is a bit whiny, and a bit depressing. I will say that the ending of the book is happy. It is worth finishing the book, so you can celebrate with her. You will learn at the end how her charity, “The LuLu Tree” came about, and about the child that comes into their life. Yes, by the end of the book, Emily is happy.
I am glad I read this book. I know Emily better, and it confirms what I learned as a stay at home mom, that God and family are so much more important and fulfilling than any secular job. I was a stay at home mom for several years, and then worked part-time while my kids were in school. I am so glad I stayed home and spent more time with my kids. If I did not have children, then fulfillment could have been through working for God, and helping others. Children change your whole life perspective. I think that is part of what Emily struggled with, and she shares that struggle in her book.
Emily is going to take a break from writing and focus on her family for a while. I totally understand this. She is young. She can always return to writing later, if she wants to, when her kids are in school.
Enjoy your family, Emily. You won’t regret it!
To buy the book “Making It Home”, or read a bit of it, go to Amazon.
To check out her previous book “Atlas Girl”, go to Emily’s page.
(I received a free copy of this book from Baker Publishing, in order to review it. The opinions are entirely my own.)