Letting Go Again is an honest and real story depicting the emotional and physical consequences of giving a child up for adoption. Kim was only seventeen – a junior in high school – when she gave birth to her daughter. The self-perceived shame of her position in life led Kim to begin to distance herself from those most important to her.
The one seemingly simple decision to allow another to raise her child helps shape the rest of her life, coloring her relationship with every person with whom she comes into contact. Her life changes drastically when she decides to seek out her long-lost daughter. When the results of the meeting are not what she dreamed they would be, Kim’s true healing and self-exploration begins.
Throughout the story, Kimberly Smythe is direct in her honesty and is able to confess some large mistakes she made in her life. She represents a population of women – birth mothers – who are often silent about their personal plight, afraid of being judged too harshly in our society. Her bravery in telling her story – one filled with beauty, pain, love, and mistakes – allows readers, perhaps for the first time, to truly reflect on the journey of birth mothers.
Kimberly writes with true intent and purpose. Her story is important to hear and sometimes difficult to read. It shows that, sometimes, good intent is not enough to create a storybook ending. This short text covers the long span of an individual’s life, and because of this, there is never much detail about any particular point. This compounded with the fact that some of the people in this story wish to remain completely anonymous leads this story to have a slightly impersonal touch. However, Kimberly’s story is intriguing, and the genuine curiosity of the reader will surely make this an insightful and engaging reading experience.
Kimberly writes like one who has been able to deeply ponder the good and bad choices of her life. She is able to explain and contextualize difficult situations that allow readers who have not experienced similar experiences to feel empathy for all involved. She writes with the patience of a mother. She seemingly represents herself accurately in this book, conveying her acknowledgement of past misdeeds while also demonstrating the importance of forgiving yourself. Letting Go Again is a real and authentic tale that has the potential to start a conversation about tolerance toward a portion of our population whom we, perhaps, judge too harshly.
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