Expecting Adam: A True Story of Birth, Rebirth, and Everyday Magic Spiral-Bound | August 2, 2011
Expecting Adam: A True Story of Birth, Rebirth, and Everyday Magic
“Slyly ironic, frequently hilarious, [Martha] Beck’s memoir charts the journey from being smart to becoming wise.”—Time
This edition includes a new afterword about Adam.
From the moment Martha and her husband, John, accidentally conceived their second child, all hell broke loose. They were a couple obsessed with success. After years of matching IQs and test scores with less driven peers, they had two Harvard degrees apiece and were gunning for more. They’d plotted out a future in the most vaunted ivory tower of academe.
But when their unborn son, Adam, was diagnosed with Down syndrome, doctors, advisers, and friends in the Harvard community warned them that if they decided to keep the baby, they would lose all hope of achieving their carefully crafted goals.
Fortunately, that’s exactly what happened. By the time Adam was born, Martha and John were propelled into a world in which they were forced to redefine everything of value to them, put all their faith in miracles, and trust that they could fly without a net. And it worked.
Expecting Adam captures the abject terror and exhilarating freedom of facing impending parenthood, being forced to question one’s deepest beliefs, and rewriting life’s rules.More Praise for Expecting Adam:
"A wonderful book, funny, unbelievably tender, and smart. It shimmers."--Anne Lamott
"Beck writes with an unusual blend of searing detail and self-effacing humor."--Chicago Tribune
"At once wickely funny and achingly painful...strikes the perfect chord."--New York Post
"Immensely appealing...hooked me on the first page and propelled me right through visions and out-of-body experiences I would normally scoff at."--Detroit Free Press
"I challenge any reader not to be moved by it."--Newsday
"Refreshing, self-deprecating humor...With many people reconsidering their frenetic, goal-oriented approach to life, Beck's book is a convincing appeal to not only stop and smell the roses but to love the thorns."--Publishers Weekly
"Not one of those grit-your-teeth, lemons-into-lemonade sagas that leaves the reader feelnig more beseiged and guilty than the writer. It is a long hymn, from a practical woman caught flat-footed by amazing grace. Martha Beck is a celebrant skeptics can trust."--Jacqueline Mitchard, author of The Deep End of the Ocean
"Her portraits of Harvard academics, omniscient doctors, and uptight in-laws are priceless. Even skeptics will find magic in this story, and parents of a Down syndrome child will cherish it."--Kirkus Reviews
"Brilliant."--Minneapolis Star Tribune
"You can't help but cheer them on . . . Beck writes in a furiously funny voice, even when she writes about awful events."--Florida Times-Union
"Excellent."--New York Daily News
"A good read."--Albany Times-Union
“Immensely appealing . . . hooked me on the first page and propelled me right through visions and out-of-body experiences I would normally scoff at.”—Detroit Free Press
“I challenge any reader not to be moved by it.”—Newsday
“A rueful, riveting, piercingly funny, thoroughly modern, and deeply old-fashioned memoir. In short, a book to be reckoned with.”—Julia Cameron, author of The Artist’s Way
“I can't believe I almost didn't read this book. The thing is, I thought it was about a lady who had a baby with Down Syndrome. This is like saying Anna Karenina is a book about a lady who commits suicide. In fact, this book is about matters so important and yet so totally way-out that I would accept no one but a comic genius with seven years at Harvard under her belt telling me about them. That’s Martha Beck: funny, companionable, razor-sharp, down-to-earth, and onto the Big Secrets of Life Itself. Anyone considering having a child should have to read this book. It has changed some of my thinking about pregnancy and about children with disabilities, and I don’t think it’s too much to say it could change my life.”—Marion Winik, author of First Comes Love and The Lunchbox Chronicles
“Expecting Adam is not one of those grit-your-teeth, lemons-into-lemonade sagas that leave the reader feeling more besieged and guilty than the writer. It is a long hymn, from a practical woman caught flatfooted by amazing grace. Martha Beck is a celebrant skeptics can trust.”—Jacquelyn Mitchard, author of The Most Wanted and The Deep End of the Ocean
“I laughed. I cried. I couldn't put it down. I didn't want it to end. I wish I knew Adam and his family—and of course I do. A brave, uplifting, life-transforming book.”—Sophy Burnham, author of A Book of Angels
“With uncommon sense and dependable wit, Martha Beck unravels every assumption about the meaning of life, choice, love--and the wisdom of pursuing happiness through any of the usual routes. If Expecting Adam raises suspicions among more rational readers that Martha Beck is slightly crazy, it raised my hopes that I’d catch it from her.”—Mary Kay Blakely, author of American Mom
MARTHA BECK is a writer, life coach, and columnist for O, the Oprah Magazine. She has a B.A., an M.A., and a Ph.D. in sociology from Harvard. Beck's other books include the New York Times bestseller Finding Your Own North Star, Leaving the Saints, The Four Day Win, The Joy Diet, and Steering by Starlight. Dr. Beck lives in Phoenix, Arizona, with her family.