The strength and bravery of a woman radiates a special kind of power, though characterized as "lesser than" in a patriarchal society. Gender wars don't prove anything but the further division of people who need each other to coexist in this world. Out of everything one has been through, misogynistic and toxic views of most men cause more harm than not. More women are continuously fighting for their rights, whether newer ones or the ones we currently have, and are threatened to be stripped from us.
Through It All, author Christina Lim shares a heartbreaking story of Christine Buffay, being a wife juggling a marriage and children while maintaining respect in the workforce. Every partner dreads the unfortunate news of their spouse's declining health because everyone wants their fairytale to last forever. Unfortunately, reality likes to sink its teeth into each of us to make us accept that nothing lasts forever, and the inevitable doom does strike at the oddest of moments.
Her husband, Jordan, received an unsettling diagnosis of his health, which added stress to the family. With their strong faith, belief system, and parenting, Tris and Jordan were able to have a serious conversation with their 14-year-old twin daughters, Tamara and Samara, and 16-year-old son Christopher, about this unexpected news. Based on the family's beliefs, you can tell the children have been brought up respectfully and understand serious circumstances. The maturity demonstrated by these teenagers is admirable, and major kudos to Tris and Jordan for ensuring they can handle any challenges in life by sticking together. The parents' and children’s relationships are ones most would be proud to experience because there are no secrets or sugar coating occurring, especially with something as serious as cancer. A challenging journey that many people would usually face alone, was shared amongst this small family. The love Jordan had from his wife and children was a beautiful thing to witness because though he is going through this life alteration alone, his family is with him every step of the way. One would be happy to know due to unfortunate circumstances, they worked their hardest to enjoy the time they had to create and cherish memories as a family.
While Tris was being super woman, wife, mom, and caregiver, she had yet another challenge to face, the patriarchy in the workforce. Knowing that the finances and responsibilities now fell on her shoulders, she made certain to acquire necessary leave, which would let her focus on everything brought to the surface. Her boss, Mr. Wade, not only respected her, he admired her for all her hard work and willingly granted her the necessary leave with pay. It was a thoughtful gesture on behalf of the company that she's put in plenty of working years. This story touches on another element of life, which were the ugly bits of what it's like being a woman. As you read, a misogynistic, sexist, egotistical, and predatorial individual, Mr. Damian, was a pointed out and isolated character highlight. He was the most difficult person throughout the story, he has been adamant on making Tris' life more complex than what she was dealing with. One would wonder, how did he get hired and what possessed him to harass staff members, particularly the women colleagues who simply are earning a living to care for their families. Clearly, by living in a "man's world," being a woman has its pros and cons.
Under so much stress with life, Tris had to deal with a disrespectful man that held the power of destroying her career. When your livelihood is on the line and possibly threatened by someone who doesn't regard you as a person, but property, you would do your best not to challenge things or risk making things worse. Standing up to bullies no matter who they are, shows strength because respect goes a long way, when used correctly. In doing so, Tris has become a respectable role model for other girls and women, letting them know they have a voice and the world should hear it.
I am a crybaby, and this story tugged hard on my heartstrings and had me in tears from page one through the end of the book. Tris' character was an admirable woman who stood up for the fragile, her terminally ill husband, the vulnerable, her younger daughter Samara, and women who feel they don't have a voice. Her strength and loving nature can make you cling to her every word because she embraced every experience and learned from them. Although a tear-shedding story, I was happy to know that despite all they have been through, there is a brighter future awaiting this family.
I would happily recommend this book to others, including women who feel they are "less than," because if Tris can face her fears and demand respect, so can others. A warning to include is to keep a box of tissues handy, dry eyes would be rare while reading this story.
- Pacific Book Review