The Invisible Girls by Sarah Thebarge
Jericho Books – April 16th, 2013
After surviving a grueling battle with breast cancer, Sarah Thebarge fled her successful career, her Ivy League education, and a failed relationship on the East Coast and started over in Portland, Oregon. She was hoping to quietly pick up the pieces of her broken life, but instead she met Hadhi and her daughters, and set out on an adventure she’d never anticipated.
Hadhi was fighting battles of her own. A Somali refugee abandoned by her husband, she was struggling to raise five young daughters in a culture she didn’t understand. When their worlds collided, Hadhi and the girls were on the brink of starvation in their own home, “invisible” in a neighborhood of strangers. As Sarah helped Hadhi and the girls navigate American life, her outreach to the family became a source of courage and a lifeline for herself.
The Invisible Girls is a memoir about Sarah Thebarge and her battle with breast cancer, her struggles during and after her diagnosis, and the Somali girls who changed her life. After being diagnosed with breast cancer, Sarah becomes conflicted about how God could do this to her when she wouldn’t wish this on someone she hated. As she struggles to start over in Portland, Oregon where she meets a Somali family of girls. Struggling with problems of their own, Sarah quickly falls in love with these girls and wants to do whatever she can to help them. Just as Sarah is helping the Somali girls, they are helping her just as much.
“I am invisible, undersand, simply
because people refuse to see me.”
— Ralph Waldo Emerson
A family friend let me borrow this book, well really she gave it to my mom and was like, “Taylor will love this.” She was right. I absolutely loved this book and everything it was about. I don’t think I have laughed or cried so much from reading a book in my life. I took more quotes from this book, I think, more than any other book I have read in a long time.
Having had cancer myself, this book hits home for me. Just like Sarah, after being diagnosed I was also wondering how God could do this to someone he supposedly loved. Although I was much younger when I was diagnosed, I feel like I can relate to Sarah to some extent and what was going on in her life during her diagnosis. I can only hope that my battle with cancer, and the struggles I have faced, can inspire and help others just as Sarah has.
There were way too many quotes from this book that I liked to list so you can check out some of them here.
The best part about this book is the relationship between Sarah and the Somali girls. Sarah truly cares for these girls and is helping them, not because they need it, but because she wants to. Sarah says at the end of her book that her biggest motivation for writing this book is so that the proceeds could go toward the girl’s college funds.
All proceeds from this book go toward the girls’ college fund. To contribute, you can mail a donation to:
Invisible Girls Trust Fund
c/o Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc.
1400 NW Irving Street, Suite 324
Portland, OR 97209
About the Author:
Sarah Thebarge is a blogger, journalist, speaker, and the author of The Invisible Girls. Sarah’s writing has been in magazines such as USA Today, Huffington Post, and Christianity Today. She has spoken at more than forty universities and colleges teaching nonfiction writing workshops and talks about health communication and public health. She Studied at Yale School of Medicine and Columbia School of Journalism.
You can learn more about Sarah here.