All That Is Bitter and Sweet: A Memoir by Ashley Judd

By Ashley Judd

Ashley Judd is an award-winning movie and degree actor identified for her roles in either box-office hits and art-house gem stones, and the daughter and sister of country-music royalty. In 2002, drawing on a deep good of empathy, she came upon her precise calling: as a humanitarian and suggest for these discomfort in missed components of the world.Asked why she was once opting out of a winning occupation, strolling away whereas she was once one of many highest-paid girls in Hollywood, Ashley herself couldn't supply a solution. She easily knew that when her first journey to the infamous brothels, slums, and hospices of southeast Asia, her personal lifestyles relied on advocating on behalf of the susceptible. Promising every one new sister, “I won't ever disregard you,” Ashley started writing striking diaries—on which this memoir is based—expanding her means to narrate to, and to proportion with an international viewers, tales of survival and resilience.Along the best way, Ashley discovered that the coping options she had constructed to accommodate her personal emotional soreness, stemming from early life abandonment, have been now not operating. looking in-patient therapy in 2006 for the grief that had approximately killed her, Ashley came across not just her personal restoration and an enriched religion yet an elevated equipment of religious instruments that energized and complicated her feminist social justice work.Now, during this deeply relocating and unforgettable memoir, Ashley Judd describes her odyssey, as a left-behind misplaced baby attains overseas prominence as a fiercely committed suggest. Her tale levels from anger to forgiveness, isolation to interdependence, melancholy to activism. In telling it, she resoundingly solutions the ineffable query in regards to the dating among therapeutic oneself and repair to others.

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Maybe, just maybe, she was letting me know she loved me, too. We stayed in Marin County for two years, and I honestly don’t have any memories of my dad from that time. I don’t recall receiving a birthday gift from him or sending him a card on his birthday; I wasn’t even confident of the date. I did not have a photograph of him. There were no calls, no Christmas presents (Dad later claimed that he had sent us presents and checks —that Mom had signed and cashed—but we certainly never saw any of them).

The photograph from that day is one I can bear to look at only briefly; it is steeped in melancholy. After the wedding, Nana rather mercilessly told Mom to move in with the Ciminellas, because she wouldn’t be able to handle a crying baby in the house along with her own sick child. So Mom carried her little suitcase up to Dad’s attic bedroom, with its junior high school pennants and trophies, where she would stay by herself while Dad continued his education in Lexington. It must have been the loneliest winter imaginable.

When a police officer friend of Mom’s showed up at the house to pick him up for parole violation, the boyfriend had vanished for good. During all this drama, Dad tried moving back in for a while, but the marriage was irreparably shattered. Their divorce was finalized in 1974. Dad decided to move to Chicago for a better job at the home office. He arranged to travel on business to Los Angeles as often as he could, and would spend long weekends with us at the house while Mom stayed elsewhere. Like many bitter ex-spouses, she never missed the chance to run him down in front of us.

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