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Breaking Night: A Memoir of Forgiveness, Survival, and My Journey from Homeless to Harvard Paperback – May 24, 2011
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Title: Breaking Night( A Memoir of Forgiveness Survival and My Journey from Homeless to Harvard) <>Binding: Paperback <>Author: LizMurray <>Publisher: HyperionBooks
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What saddened me more than reading this Memoir, were the negative comments. I do believe, without a shadow of a doubt, Ms Murray had, and still has, strong emotions regarding her life. She chose to try to write an inspirational book. Depressing? Yes, if you can't handle the reality of many children. I think reading the back cover would give a clue on the contents. When surrounded in such dysfunction, one would be emotionally delayed. Emotions can crop up many years after the actual situation. Her life was more of a daily battle zone. Survival mode does not give one much time to analyze feelings. Her forgiveness of her parent's are amazing, though those thoughts may change as she ages, and perspective sets in. Eating chapstick is hardly conducive to proper nutrition, or stimulating the brain cells. Neither is being born crack addicted. I suppose the 80's were different, though I cannot fathom why Social Services did not remove her from the hospital. I commend those who actually did help and guide her.
It appears many simply ignored the situation. No family members involved? The breakdown of our society. I would like to see her write a second book. An update, if you will. More on Lisa. More on her emotions, even if it offends those who were depressed by the contents. No judgements from me. None. God has truly walked with these two sisters. May they continue on a path of peace. Thank you for writing this Liz.
I had the privilege of hearing Liz Murray speak at a Commencement Ceremony for the University of Utah. She told her story of going from being homeless to getting an education at Harvard. After hearing her speak, I knew I had to read more about her story.
Liz Murray grew up in a family with parents who were drug addicts. At a young age she knew how to set up the paraphernalia for her parent’s big night of drug binges. Her father was a very smart man who never went to college or fulfilled any of his dreams. Her mother was legally blind and her monthly disability check was all the family had to live on. After they picked up the check the family ate well for a few days until all the money had been used for drugs and alcohol. Liz’s sister was always telling her parents to take care of her children and not do drugs. Liz was the advocate for her parents and lookout so she could tell her parents to hide the drugs from her sister.
Liz and her sister grew up with never enough to eat, no clean clothes, and no one to tuck them in at night. Their living conditions were unsanitary with a bathtub that wouldn’t drain and the water had gone rotten, making the apartment smell bad. Liz started skipping school while still in elementary school so she could spend time watching game shows with her parents. She only went to enough school to pass her tests and move on to the next grade level. As a teenager, her parents separated and she lived with her mom and a new boyfriend for a while then went back to the apartment until her father turned her in to protective services. Liz was so afraid of going back into custody she lived with friends, sleeping under their beds and eating and showering only when the parents went to work.
Liz wanted to go back to school and make a life for herself, but the kids she hung out with seemed to be having too much fun. She finally went to high school and studied in the empty hallways of apartment buildings, because it was quiet. She was so far behind in school that she had to take four years of high school in two years.
This is a wonderful story of strength, commitment and fulfilling your dreams. You really don’t want to miss this book. It has come out in movie form as well as the Liz Murray Story.