Check It Out: We Are the Luckiest: The Surprising Magic of a Sober Life by Laura McKowen

Sep 7, 2020

This is Sarah Enright, with the Sioux City Public Library, and you’re listening to Check It Out. Today, I am recommending We Are the Luckiest by Laura McKowen.

There’s something about memoirs that intrigue me more than any other genre or type of book. For me, it’s like being able to meet people from all walks of life and getting to know them through their words. The honest appraisal of an individual’s real-life battles and often the way they’ve conquered them, are captivating and inspiring in a way I don’t find in many other places. This is certainly true of Laura Mckowen’s We Are the Luckiest, subtitled The Surprising Magic of a Sober Life. 

Although this memoir follows Laura’s journey to sobriety, it’s not your typical addiction story. Laura has crafted a fearlessly honest presentation of her journey with grace and humility. She destroys the stereotypical image of an alcoholic. She’s an educated woman with a young daughter and a fancy career living in the city of her dreams. Despite these facts, and the normalization of drinking in all aspects of her life, she has lost herself in her addiction and it’s become a disaster. She unflinchingly describes her most vulnerable moments and the episodes that ultimately led her to take her life in an opposite direction.

Even if you can’t relate to substance abuse, Laura explains that everyone has their thing in life, the thing they don’t like, or the thing they want to change. Her thing just happened to be drinking. She believes everyone has an invitation to wake up at some point and those that show up are truly the luckiest. They’re the ones that make it through their struggles and now recognize the miracles of daily life, knowing what it’s like to be on the other side. Laura gives us permission to see the struggles as steppingstones to our greatest blessings.  

Check out We Are the Luckiest and other fascinating memoirs at the Sioux City Public Library. 

Support for Check It Out on Siouxland Public Media comes from Avery Brothers.