Sincere, profound and deeply satisfying.” Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“Bursting with life energy. Profound and inspiring. A must-read.” Deepak Chopra
“Timothy Shriver has written a lovely, honest, and inspiring book that draws on his own wisdom, life experiences, and pioneering work as a champion of the intellectually disabled to offer important lessons for all of us.” Michael Beschloss, author of Presidential Courage
“Timothy Shriver is not only a gifted writer but a profound intellect and a genuine seeker of the deep truths that make any human life worth living. To read this book is to have your own experience illuminated by an immensely compassionate being, to embrace your own limitations, and to move on with a warmer heart, a more peaceful mind, and a joyfully uplifted spirit.” Martha Beck, author of Finding Your Way in a Wild New World
“This is a beautiful book about love, meaning, and the Kennedys. It is about Joseph and Rose's life with Rosemary, their daughter with an intellectual disability, who was a tragedy, yes, but also an amazing and precious person, a blessing to her family, challenging and beloved, a radical teacher of the value of each human life. This is the story of Rosemary Kennedy's role in leading the family to its force as advocates for the disabled all over the world, of her sister Eunice Shriver's founding of Special Olympics, of her nephew Timothy's dedication to this great cause. I was lifted, edified, riveted.” Anne Lamott, author of Small Victories
Bursting with life energy. Profound and inspiring. A must-read.
A Kennedy family scion's moving story of how working on behalf of the socially marginalized and intellectually disabled opened his heart to new ways of understanding himself and others. Living to make a difference in the world was a Kennedy motto. But before Special Olympics chairman Shriver could successfully do this, he had to come to terms with himself, both spiritually and emotionally. In his youth, he immersed himself in the Bible and other sacred texts, as well as the writings of mystics like Bernard of Clairvaux and Jean Vanier. In the author's early professional life, he taught and counseled underprivileged children and adolescents in public high schools and universities in Connecticut. As he struggled to help change young lives, he became aware that to genuinely reach people, he had to learn to truly love himself. "God was not ‘out there,' waiting for me to perform some act of brilliance or fame," he writes "but was rather within." As he came to value simplicity, Shriver also learned to value humility, which he learned in part by articulating the story of his mentally challenged—and later tragically lobotomized—aunt Rosemary. Adored as she was, Rosemary spent almost all of her adult life hidden away in a Wisconsin care facility because of the shame she caused members of the high-achieving Kennedy clan. Shriver's mother, Eunice, eventually restored meaning to Rosemary's life by championing the cause of the intellectually disabled and founding the Special Olympics in 1968. When Shriver joined the organization in 1996, he oversaw its growth into a phenomenon that offered people around the world insight into what true leadership was: the ability to "[make] people want to be better." Even more importantly, he came into contact with extraordinary young athletes who taught him that the most important way of living was "from the inside out." Sincere, profound and deeply satisfying.