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Book Review: The Best Worst Thing: A Memoir by Kristen K. Brown

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“As a wife, new mother, and successful career woman, Kristen Brown thinks her life is set. Until one morning, her husband doesn’t wake up.”

Just that descriptive promotional sentence on the back cover screamed at me that I needed to read The Best Worst Thing. My story is nowhere near her story but I knew I would be able to embrace all that author Kristen K. Brown had to say. There were many nights that I set the book down because reading any more would have caused me to cry abundantly. My husband worked in Florida for two years; we live in Wisconsin. He left on this new job two months after welcoming our third daughter into our lives. I would fear for a plane crash or something equally as bad happening to him while he was on the road leaving me with three little girls looking to me for everything.

Kristen had to live with the reality of it, being with her husband one night and the next morning finding that he had passed in the night. She got struck with the reality that not everything turns out as you plan in life and that everything happens to make you a better and stronger person. But I’m getting ahead of myself again.

I loved reading Brown’s book. Most of the chapters are bite-sized for those women who only have a few minutes at a time to devour the information they need to continue on with their lives. Some of her topics seem completely random (which I love because that’s how I write) until she walks you through it and then you could see that it fit perfectly into her story at that point and you could understand that moment.

Kristen gave you the total picture of her life. You got the bare-bones of her thoughts: the good and the bad. The challenges of being a mom, especially a single mom. How we women sometimes tend to focus on the proper and necessary raising of our children and sometimes forget about our own health and well-being. Which reminds me of a quote from motivational speaker Jim Rohn, “You take care of you for me and I’ll take care of me for you.”

I really enjoyed reading about her spiritual search and how she went at it as a professor more than searching for something that would make her feel better. Kristen read the history of the religions of our world and discovered that she doesn’t fit into a religion but she has a very strong faith. She loved finding out that Jesus was a real man rather than a mythical figure (especially seeing that she was raised Lutheran). Kristen realized that there is more out there than the typical person likes to talk about. That we are all connected through all time. God doesn’t see time, only we as humans need time.

I wanted to give Brown a high-five (as cheesy as that sounds) when she started telling about her “gifted” daughter who always amazes her about how much she truly knows. She mentioned that it might have something to do with being left-handed and that making people more creative or intelligent. My youngest is a lefty and she astounds me daily by how much she knows, how much she is capable of, and how well she can dissect an idea or an item just to see how it all works. I loved it because I now know that I am not alone with my tiny girl and all of the challenges she puts me through.

If you need a wake up call to your life and what you may think about other moms and their issues in life, you need to read The Best Worst Thing. I am looking at the women around me in a different light. I am looking at my husband in a different light.

To find more about Kristen K. Brown and her book, you can find her at her website, on Facebook, or on Twitter.

Go meet this amazing woman.

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