Monday, March 22, 2021

Book Review: Diggin' Up Bones by Bonnie Wright

Diggin' Up Bones: One woman's spiritual struggle and her golden retriever who leads her out of unconscious transgenerational shame Diggin' Up Bones: One Woman's Spiritual Struggle and Her Golden Retriever Who Leads Her Out of Unconscious Transgenerational Shame. Bonnie Wright. SS Safari All-Star Press (2021). 456 pages. Genre: Non-fiction; Memoir.

First Lines: "Living a divided life is a lie.  While I appeared normal to the world, I hid the dark shadow of trauma. It got inside me and followed me."

Summary: Bonnie grew up in a home full of harsh words, anger and criticism.  There was very little affection in her home.  Had it not been for her mother's deep faith, she would never have understood that there was something more than this life.  

As she grew up and left home, she found herself patterning her life after the home life she experienced growing up.  She married a man who turned out to be just like her dad.  How could she have done that?  She never intended to do that and yet, she found herself choosing another similar man.  The warning signs were there, but Bonnie's deep longing to be loved caused her to ignore them.  

She had been blessed with a couple of pets in her life and always found them as loving companions that loved her without condition. So, she decided to adopt a male Golden Retriever.  As Bonnie began training him and helping him through the aggression issues that he had, she began to realize that she had some heart issues that needed to be worked through.  This is the story of Bonnie's journey from a young woman full of shame and longing to a woman who has discovered true love and purpose. 

My thoughts: Bonnie and her dog, Siri, attend my church.  I have often been greeted by them at the front door on a Sunday morning.  Part of Bonnie's story was recently shared in one of our pastor's sermons.  I knew then that I wanted to read her book.

Bonnie's story is incredible in many ways.  She has endured things both as a child and an adult that no human being should ever have to endure.  It was often difficult to read.  But, there were always glimmers of hope.  She is an overcomer and that definitely comes through in the memoir.  She has been knocked down many times, but doesn't stay down for long. 

Her relationship with her dogs is beautiful.  Many people never experience that depth of relationship with a human being, let alone with a dog.  I learned a lot about training a dog and the grueling work required to get a dog ready for competition.  From my own experience I know that dogs can sense a person's feelings, but I learned much about the depth of a dog's feelings.  It reminded me that often the thing a hurting person needs is just someone to be with them.  Dogs can't say a word, but their loving presence often is better than words. 

I recommend this book for anyone who enjoys memoirs, is a dog lover or wants to read about an incredible faith journey.  

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