Perfectly Human

Sarah C. Williams

Paperback

Barcode: 9780874866698

Release date: 18/10/2018

£11.99
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Happily married and teaching history at the University of Oxford, Sarah Williams had credentials, success, and knowledge. It took someone who would never have any of these things to teach her what it means to be human.This extraordinary true story begins with the welcome news of a new member of the Williams family. SarahÕs husband, Paul, and their two young daughters share her excitement. But the happiness is short-lived, as a hospital scan reveals a lethal skeletal dysplasia. Birth will be fatal.Sarah and Paul decide to carry the baby to term, a decision that shocks medical staff and SarahÕs professional colleagues. Sarah and Paul find themselves having to defend their childÕs dignity and worth against incomprehension and at times open hostility. They name their daughter Cerian, Welsh for Òloved one.Ó Sarah writes, ÒCerian is not a strong religious principle or a rule that compels me to make hard and fast ethical decisions. She is a beautiful person who is teaching me to love the vulnerable, treasure the unlovely, and face fear with dignity and hope.ÓIn this candid and vulnerable account, Perfectly Human brings the reader along with Sarah on the journey towards Cerian's birthday and her deathday. ItÕs rare enough to find a writer who can share such a heart-stretching personal experience without sounding sappy, but here is one who at the same time has the ability to articulate the broader cultural issues raised by CerianÕs story. In a society striving for perfection, where worth is earned, identity is constructed, children are a choice, normal is beautiful, and deformity is repulsive, CerianÕs short life raises vital questions about what we value and where we are headed as a culture.

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