Uncomplicated Life, An: A Father's Memoir of His Exceptional Daughter

Paperback | October 6, 2015

byPaul Daugherty

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A father’s exhilarating and funny love letter to his daughter with Down syndrome whose vibrant and infectious approach to life has something to teach all of us about how we can better live our own. 

Jillian Daugherty was born with Down syndrome. The day they brought her home from the hospital, her parents, Paul and Kerry, were flooded with worry and uncertainty, but also overwhelming love, which they channeled to “the job of building the better Jillian.” While their daughter had special needs, they refused to allow her to grow up needy—“Expect, Don’t Accept” became their mantra. Little did they know how ready Jillian was to meet their challenge.

Paul tells stories from Jillian’s mischievous childhood and moves to her early adulthood, tracing her journey to find happiness and purpose in her adult life, sharing endearing anecdotes as well as stories about her inspiring triumphs. Having graduated from high school and college, Jillian now works to support herself, and has met the love of her life and her husband-to-be, Ryan.

In An Uncomplicated Life, the parent learns as much about life from the child as the child does from the parent. Through her unmitigated love for others, her sparkling charisma, and her boundless capacity for joy, Jillian has inspired those around her to live better and more fully. The day Jillian was born, Paul says, was the last bad day. As he lovingly writes, “Jillian is a soul map of our best intentions”—a model of grace, boundless joy, and love for all of us.

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From the Publisher

A father’s exhilarating and funny love letter to his daughter with Down syndrome whose vibrant and infectious approach to life has something to teach all of us about how we can better live our own. Jillian Daugherty was born with Down syndrome. The day they brought her home from the hospital, her parents, Paul and Kerry, were flooded w...

From the Jacket

Jillian Daugherty was born with Down syndrome. The day her parents, Paul and Kerry, brought her home from the hospital, they were flooded with worry and uncertainty, but also with overwhelming love, which they channeled to "the job of building the better Jillian." They knew their daughter had special needs, but they refused to have her...

Paul Daugherty has been a sports columnist for theCincinnati Enquirersince 1994. He has covered nearly every major American sporting event, as well as five Summer Olympic Games. He is the author ofFair Game, a collection of his sports columns, and coauthor of books with Chad Johnson and Johnny Bench. He blogs daily atThe Morning Lineon...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:384 pages, 8 × 5.31 × 0.86 inPublished:October 6, 2015Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0062359959

ISBN - 13:9780062359957

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Customer Reviews of Uncomplicated Life, An: A Father's Memoir of His Exceptional Daughter

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from A MUST READ BOOK FOR EVERYONE! This book can be summed up in four words: courage, perseverance, sacrifice, and love! I was touched by Paul’s story about his daughter Monica in so many ways. Having had a child born with physical challenges and in the beginning we were told mental also (which later proved very wrong), I could relate to the Daugherty’s beliefs. We determined to help our child be all that they could be within their abilities and to stretch their even in those areas. We refused to give up and accept medicine’s status qua for their life. That choice was criticized by many but had far reaching results in their adult life. I applaud Paul and his wife for looking outside the box and helping Monica have the life she deserved, not the life others thought she should have. Their love was apparent in the unfaltering battle to help their daughter not only in her education but preparing her for adulthood. In working with Downs Syndrome children and even other children born with disabilities, it is heartbreaking to see parents give up from the beginning of the diagnosis. I have seen parents even worsen the situation by focusing on what is wrong with the child, pitying and coddling them. Instead of not looking to their future by helping them develop the best of their capabilities. This is what the author and his wife did. Monica was raised to believe in and accept herself. Not as the world saw her but as she truly was. Her parents showed tough love to help her grow. They respected her as an individual and a person by allowing her own decisions in areas she could. The Daugherty labored on past their frustration and exhaustion in dealing with professionals and authorities who were determined to keep their daughter in the Downs Syndrome “box”. What Monica accomplished is incredible. While this is not on a negative note at all, this after all was his story. But did not agree with the choice the author made for his daughter preparing her for marriage. You have to read this book! Yes, it is a beautiful story about Monica, her life, and the battle her parents fought for her, but it is much much more! A wonderful book with many lessons for all of us to learn! I received this book at no charge from Harper Collins Publishers in exchange for an honest review. The opinions I have stated are my own.
Date published: 2015-10-24

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Editorial Reviews

“Affecting. ... This feel-good memoir will appeal to all parents of children with special needs.”