Below is a brief synopsis of White Bees:
Amy was born with a double cleft lip and palate, a condition her grandpa called a tragedy and her
mother called a “blessing to bring the family together in unity.”
Amy’s first memory is not of the surgeries, instead, she remembers clearly sitting on top of the
kitchen heat vent, looking out the sliding glass door, watching the snowfall. To her, the fluffy white
wonders don’t look like snow at all, but rather, white bees. They are innocent, happy, and content,
despite their chaotic journey through the atmosphere. And she could relate.
When her peaceful world is interrupted by school, it’s the bully who plagues her, lifting his lip up until
his mouth mimics an upside down v. His words sink in and cover her in pain so thick it feels as if her face is being dragging across the asphalt. Yet, the days on the playground build her character and trust in her beautiful sister, Jeannie, who files her nails to a point for better scratching, wears her Sunday shoes to school for better kicking, and fearlessly eliminates the bully from tormenting Amy.
The reliance in her older sister during childhood builds into a bond during Amy’s teenage years as she
leans on Jeannie to protect her and show her the way. White Bees parallels the two sister’s lives: Amy
inwardly struggling to endure speech therapy, prank calls, and surgeries; and Jeannie effortlessly dating,modeling, and competing in pageants. Amy hides her inner conflict deep within layer eleven – where all the dark days are held in quiet reserve waiting for freedom. She bravely continues with hope and faith in God– and the pain is all worth it for the fairytale ending that comes just before a late winter storm, days before turning age of seventeen.
Surrounded by her friends, the Rebels, and a family who loves her deeply, Amy finds her own inner
beauty and optimism for the life she has yet to live. White Bees is a hopeful and triumphant memoir
written for the girl and woman who has always felt more beautiful on the inside than on the outside —
and the moment when the rest of her world finally saw her beauty too.
|Me and my Mom. March 11th, 1973. I love this picture so much.|
|And 37 years later...me and my third child, my daughter Maggie. Perfect as she is. Lovely as we are.|