Welcome to Tigersue's Jungle. Here you may find a Jungle of thoughts and idea's. You may never know what you will find!
Yes, I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints! I am a wife, a mother, a sister, and a friend.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Anita Stansfield

Anita Stansfield
I just finished reading A Time to Dance by Anita Stansfield,
I enjoy her books, but I can't say I love them. This one has plenty of pain and sorrow in it and it is very touching in many respects with some great lessons to learn about forgiveness and repentance, endurance, patience and faith. The biggest problem I have had with her is about a couple of things;
first that some much of the problems are solved with money, or made easier with money. Reality is that not everyone knows someone or has access to a great deal of money to make life easier to deal with the trials thrown our way. This really drives me crazy, it is not real, and I think it can give a false impression of how God answers our prayers.
2nd is this statement that women that complain about have a clothes washer breakdown, or not have money to fix a car have no clue about sorrow or trial. Sure there is a perspective there and I would agree with that, but to minimize the struggle of needed to have clean clothes and not be able to get to a laundry mat, let alone perhaps having the coins to do your laundry, or the trial of having no money and wondering how on earth you can make ends meet on a day to day basis is a huge trial for most people. To me it is hypocritical to have a characters that have the blessing of knowing people with money to help in times of stress and great trial, and then state that somehow other women have no concept of trial because not everyone has the some trials is some how weaker or less worthy just drives me insane. It would be better to have the characters state that to them it puts the trival trials such as worrying about car repairs, or appliance repairs seems small after going through all of that. Maybe I'm off base, and maybe I'm just extra touchy at the moment. I know that my trials in this life are nothing compared to many people I know, but I learned a lesson several years ago, to not trivialize my trials no matter what they are! We all learn from our various problems and stresses in life, and it is completely unfair to compair myself or belittle myself because I haven't "endured" what others have endured. Am I greatful I haven't, you bet, How can I not be, yet at the same time I feel it is part of Satan's plan to destroy our self worth to compare and put ourselves down, or even other's down because we get stressed out over a washing machine breaking down. Is it the end of the World? NO! But by gallly when it happens to me I want to sit down and have a good cry, and have someone tell me it is not the end of the World. I shouldn't have to feel bad because it is so. Maybe her characters would be better if we could see more of the moments of daily stress that actually makes it harder to deal with the big stresses, and at the same time be able to keep in perspective the big picture when the little one's happen. After all we don't all have some one we can move in with when times get tough, we don't all have someone with loads of money to pay for school, hospital bills, and the other problems that arrise to make life challenging. There is only one person that can help in the Eternal Scheme of things and I'm sure glad he is there because sometimes I just think the little things are going to drag me down, and I'm glad there is a loving Heavenly Father that can hear my prayers even when I think they are not heard.
I'm grateful for His Son that understand the depth of all our pain and sorrows. I know with out Him I would not make it.


Téa said...

I can see how those two themes would be frustrating as a reader.

It almost could be variations on one theme really, as both seem to relate back to her thoughts on money and trials.

If I'm understanding you correctly, the book relays the idea that "if money can fix it, it's not a true problem" by both showing the charcters having easy access to money and by painting as clueless or less-righteous those who struggle with difficulties relating to finances.

I would submit that only those people who have no financial worries could honestly believe that "if money fixes it..." to be true.

Money can't fix everything, and money can't buy love, the best things in life are free, alll truths twisted here.

When I spend time worrying about matters that could be fixed by money, it's going to make everything else that much harder, that much more overwhelming. Maslow's hierarchy of needs starts with physical security first--there's a reason for that!

You're right, it would be more inspiring to read about someone slogging through the hazards of daily life than to come away from a book like this feeling demeaned by the author's (out of touch with reality) feelings on wealth.

Tigersue said...

It is as much that someone comes to the rescue with money and that just doesn't happen. There are all kinds of trials in life. This book focuses on a boy with Leukemia, the parents have trouble with house payments so they sell the house and move in with a cousin that has a big enough home, and eventually will sell it to them. I just know there are many people in life with these same sorts of problems, and have no one to help out like that and have to deal with the additional stress. Life goes on even when there are illness and other stuff, it just isn't left at the door. How do well all get throught the "big" trials" when the "little" trials still are there. That to me is the big question in life. IT is everything, not just one thing that defines us as a person.

MomR said...

Maybe since she has soooo much money now from the sale of her books she has forgotten just how hard life can be when there just isn't enough to go around for the necessities!

Kimberly said...

I used to love Anita Stanfield's Books but I got so that I really didn't like reading them anymore so I don't even pick them up.

Anonymous said...

How sad that none of you saw the fact that the husband and wife worked through their problems, ya someone with money helped them out but that did not keep their marriage intact. I think that if Anita Stansfield knew how strongly you all felt about "her theory" or what you believe is her theory on money she would be crushed. You are right money doesn't fix anything but throughout all of her books not just "A Time to Dance" she uses her characters to portray a love of the Savior and the charity that He asks us all to emulate. Maybe you need to reread the book and not be so critical but enjoy it. Maybe you should walk in the doors of Primary Children's and see the fountain and feel the angels because they are here everyday.

Janeal said...

I have read her books and have loved everyone of them. They have a way of drawing you in and actually believing that these characters really exsist. I think I have cried and laughed in everyone of them. When I read them, I can't put them down until I finish the last page. And then when I close the book after reading the last page. I'm left with such a good feeling. They are my ecsape. I have never even thought about the money the people have in the stories. I see the struggles they have and how staying close to the Savoir helps them through it, not the money. Money didn't help Tara when she was raped in "By Love and Grace" It was the love of the Savior and Sean that got her through it. It wasn't money that got Bryson through the death of Ilene when she got breast cancer in " A Promise of Forever" it was the love of his Savior and the promise of a temple marriage. These are just two examples of what I got out of them. Money didn't help Emily when Michael got cancer and died it was her family friends and the gospel. I guess everyone gets something different out of what they read. I just know that Anita is an outstanding author. I could never write like that. Thank you Anita for bringing some great escape to a mother of five, your books have kept me sane.