My Mom and I live across the street from an elementary school. She sometimes goes over there for her work. And me, knowing that the school was having a Scholastic Book Fair one week, I asked her to get me a book if she did visit. Fortunately for me, she did, and she brought me home a book and a pen. I didn’t think much of the book at first because it was a kid’s book after all. What did I expect from an elementary school book fair though?
This year, I finally picked up the book to read it (I haven’t read a lot of books that are already in my bookshelf). The book is called, My Diary from the Edge of the World by Jodi Lynn Anderson. When I reached the end of it a couple of days ago, I was surprised. I wasn’t surprised by the ending but how the story made me feel.
The story begins with a young girl named Gracie writing in her diary about her life. She continues when her family decides that they need to leave the comfort of their home to save a family member. Gracie narrates this emotional journey to the edge of the world. At the end, the whole family realizes that sometimes you can’t avoid the unavoidable.
The book was a total of 419 pages, give or take a few. Before I read it, I thought it was rather long for a children’s book. After I read it, it didn’t feel that way at all. Sometimes it does feel like there is just fluff and all I want to do is to end the book. I don’t even want to know what happens; it is just so agonizing.
Every little situation that the family got themselves into all had an impact on them in some way. Whether it was to get to their destination sooner or just character development. But isn’t that what life is about? The journey and not the destination. In some ways, this book teaches the reader that life isn’t always what you think it is and that it is more about the journey. The most important lesson that this book teaches us is to be grateful for the now and for what you have now.
Because in the end, Gracie and her family end up facing loss despite having done everything possible to avoid it. Maybe we spend too much time focused on what is going to happen and trying to change it that we forget to live now. We don’t know what life has coming for us, good or bad. I think Gracie said it best, “Anything is possible, I think. So if you’re reading this in some other place: Hello. I was here. I spent time on this planet. And it was extraordinary.”