By: Lene Fogelberg
Published Sept 15, 2015
Lene Fogelberg is dying—she is sure of it—but no doctor in Sweden, her home country, believes her. Love stories enfold her, with her husband, her two precious daughters, her enchanting surroundings, but the question she has carried in her heart since childhood—Will I die young?—is threatening all she holds dear, even her sanity. When her young family moves to the US, an answer, a diagnosis, is finally found: she is in the last stages of a fatal congenital heart disease. But is it too late?
Unflinchingly honest and often harrowing, Beautiful Affliction is an inspiring account of growing up and living on the verge of death—and of the beauty, harshness, loneliness, and, ultimately, unbending love that can be found there.
I was notified on FB that a couple of ARC copies of this memoir was being given away for review. I jumped on it after reading the synopsis and asked Lene for a copy. I was so excited to be picked to read it. I planned on reading it before the deadline of the 15th but I have been battling migraines this month. I did however just finished reading it and I was blown away.
There is nothing in this book that I did not like, well except for maybe the ignorance of doctors and the health care system of Sweden but that has changed now.
It is so beautifully written and it is a fast read. One of the things that is the driving force of this book is the love between Lene and Anders. It is a genuine unbreakable bond between them, that people nowadays have no idea can be possible. I am happy to have found my own Anders.
Yes, love and family are the main driving force but there is also the monster that she feels in her chest her whole life. I have no idea how I would have reacted if I were in her shoes when the doctors kept telling her it is nothing or something totally different.
There are some heartbreaking and very gut wrenching parts in this books. It did make me hold my own breath ( roller coaster scene) and made me cry. I have 2 girls of my own and I have no idea how I could leave them either.
Thank you for sharing your story with me Lene. It made me take a step back and enjoy the little things and times I have with my own small family.
About the Author
Lene Fogelberg is an award-winning poet and double open-heart surgery survivor. Born in Sweden, her curiosity for culture and language has drawn her to live abroad, in Germany, France and the United States, studying German, French, and English along the way. She currently lives with her family in Indonesia, where she is working on a novel that takes place in Jakarta.