3 out of 4 stars
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It is a powerful thing when we take something negative and turn it into something positive.
My Living Will , written by John Trautwein, is an autobiographical story of his life experiences.
John Trautwein is a former major league pitcher who woke up to a tragedy on October 15, 2010, that changed his life forever.
Without any signs or warnings, his 15-year-old son Will who appeared to be happy, committed suicide in his bedroom while
everyone slept. Will was the oldest of 4 children, an athlete like his dad was, and a guitar player. The family was confused
and distraught about how they were going to get through the rest of their lives without Will. Numerous questions plagued
their minds constantly. what were these questions? how did the family get through this period of grief? This was the start
of life-changing events for the Trautwein family.
The family made it through those terrifying days because of prayer, love, and support from wonderful family members and
friends. I can just imagine all the family went through that morning and many mornings after. It is devastating to lose a
child and a brother. It must have been heart-wrenching to know that just the night before the suicide everything seemed to be
ok with Will, with no sign of stress, depression, or other issues. Who would have thought it would turn out the way it did?
Throughout the book I really liked how the author acknowledged all his friends and relatives by name. It shows how
appreciative he was of each of them at a very sorrowful and uncomfortable time in his life. It was also amazing how closely
knitted his family and Suzie's family were. Not to mention his wonderful friends, who came from near and far to be with him
and his family. This book taught me a lot about true friendship and the love of family. I saw that John Trautwein was a God-
fearing man that loves his family unconditionally, which is an excellent attribute for someone to possess. In this book, I
now realize that no matter what happens around me or in my life, I must remain positive, focussed, thankful and hopeful. A
particular section of the book that warmed my heart was the gathering at the candlelight where all of Will's friends spoke
of him being their helper, consultant, and a friend that reached out to them during their difficult and lonely times. It has
left us all to ask the question, "why didn't Will have a friend like himself that he could have reached out to in his time of
difficulty and loneliness?". That question will indeed remain unanswered. This book delivers hope to young people everywhere
and also educates persons on the issues young people are facing with mental illness. Through the "Will to Live" foundation,
John has helped young people to have a brighter outlook on life and to be "life teammates" for each other. The foundation is
all about love, inspiration, and hope which are positive aspects.
However a part of the book that confused me is the belief that John had that Will is still able to enter the heavenly
Paradise without repentance. I have always heard that suicide and blasphemy are unforgivable sins, hence, my understanding
is you wont be in the first resurrection for the righteous but instead, you will be in the resurrection for the unrighteous.
Has that changed? I don't understand how a pastor can say that a person who killed himself is in heaven immediately after
the act. Did he say that to bring comfort to the family? would that then be considered a lie? I am left bewildered. The
scripture does not offer any clear teaching on what happens to a person after they die and before resurrection, but I read
that the righteous souls go straight in the presence of our creator after death and that our new bodies will not be given to
us until resurrection day. So where do the unrighteous souls go? we all have to face judgement when we are resurrected,
before we can have a part in the heavenly kingdom or in Satan's kingdom. There were also a few typographical and punctuation
errors seen throughout the book, but not enough to prevent me from enjoying the book.
I therefore rate My Living Will written by John Trautwein 3 out of 4 stars. The book was not properly
edited, hence the reason for not rating it higher.
I highly recommend this book to three groups of people: Those who are struggling with serious depression issues and believe
there is no hope for them; those parents who believe everything is perfect with their teenagers, and those who have
experienced the loss of a child/children in their lives.
My Living Will
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