Wisdom for Women: A Book Review of Bianca Sparacino’s ‘A Gentle Reminder’

“I hope you have the courage to let love and opportunity move through you like rain. To not grip, or seek to change it, to not ask people or circumstances to be more than they can be for you.”

Bianca Sparacino | A Gentle Reminder

Echoing the wise words of this remarkable young author, I wrote this article for my girls (and myself) who have ever felt rooted in all the ways they have been wronged. Who now or at one time in their lives called themselves “broken.” This article isn’t to make you go out and purchase a book that you really don’t have time to read but to share some deep, raw, and painful convictions that can quite possibly heal you. And so I’ve decided to package such wisdom for women in a quick little book review. 

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Wisdom for Women: A Book Review of Bianca Sparacino’s ‘A Gentle Reminder’

“A Gentle Reminder” by Bianca Sparacino is precisely what the title suggests – a gentle, compassionate nudge for the many facets of life. In its essence, Bianca’s words move you to not only reflect on the (beautifully) messy aspects of being a human woman but to embrace it all. To give yourself permission to be both happy and sad, to feel real, and to release perfection.  

Because let’s be honest, these days as we are still figuring out our “new normal”, life just feels extra messy right now. And in effort to combat those feelings some of us (me!) aim to read a positive “you can do it” affirmation daily to get a quick morning hit of courage or inspiration; but it doesn’t seem to stretch long enough to get us through the days.

Warning: this book is not at all like that. Don’t get me wrong, it is 100% encouraging. And it will offer you inspiration. Only–in a different way. 

This book invites you to take what you need, whenever you need it. 

In her book, tucked away within its pages you will reveal achy insights, raw truths, and “ah, HAIL NAW” light bulb moments. I have included some of those later in this review.

An Overview 

Typewriter

Bianca shares such wisdom for women through the experiences that real women like you and I endure in our lives, gifting us all with the philosophical principle of zooming out and looking at our lives with a view from above. 

In its gentle prose, you’ll find courageous themes to help disentangle you from your past, and to rise above your imperfections. It encourages you to remain soft in a world that can sometimes harden hearts and to love deeply even when the world forgets how. Most importantly, its message empowers you the reader to change your perspective on how you view the world, but most importantly how you view and treat yourself.

Bianca dedicates this book “for the deep feelers”, offering words of healing, words of wisdom to all women.

Uniquely Formatted 

Formatted as a “take what you need”, this approach offers readers a unique and flexible reading experience. Books formatted like this are more “buffet” style where the reader can just wake up, quickly flip through pages and land on a page that will offer them some sort of wisdom to take with them for the day. Unlike the traditional books that have linear narratives, the reader then has the choice to read it page by page in order or read whatever catches her eye. Either way, the experience is left up to you.

Authors of books formatted like this, truly respect the reader’s journey, empowering them to curate their own experience, allowing them to shape their morning and their days with the type of mood that they seek to step into.

Other life-inspiring books written in this style are “Heart Talk” written by Cleo Wade and “The Daily Stoic” by Ryan Holiday. 

The “take what you need” book is perfect for all women. Women who don’t like to read long books or women who are so tired after a day of work that they absolutely cannot absorb the deep messages of long chapters. Where women can essentially take the wisdom that they need.

It is a no-pressure kind of book with zero expectations. Like medicine for the soul… you just take what you need. 

Girls Night in a Book

As if Bianca herself was sitting in the middle of the bed with you, in a pair of comfy bottoms, and a messy bun, her words provide you with comfort and the good spirits of having your best gal pal with you. In her unique way, Bianca walks you through self-reflection. The way only a really good friend can do.

She offers you a perspective on how to look at your broken heart. To see courage where you see weakness. To let fate do what it does and to accept it wholeheartedly with confidence instead of fear. 

She reframes circumstances helping you come to see the importance of taking responsibility in reshaping your self-worth and self-respect. 

It feels as if she comes to your defense, cheering you on to say “Boy, Byyyyyiiiiieeee” and then re-directs your focus to the more important factors of the matter at hand.

The Author: Who is Bianca Sparacino 

Crop faceless woman working on netbook in office

Bianca is the author of numerous poetry books. Although I could not find a birthdate on her, it is speculated that she is in her late 20s. 

What we do know is this young woman with an old soul is from Toronto, Canada, and has a social media presence on Instagram, FB, and Twitter. 

Her extensive collection of books and the themes she explores clearly reflect her wealth of wisdom for women. Despite her youth, she delves into the harrowing experiences that women face at various life stages, making her highly relatable.

Regardless of age, there’s an unspoken bond that undeniably unites us all as women.

She’s Philosophical 

Through her compassionate tone, she encourages women to find acceptance at the end of things, to give themselves permission to “slow down”, and deep-set introspection. Not allowing ourselves to be slaves to our irrational thoughts, self-limiting beliefs, or false fears. 

This book was gifted to me by one of my best friends. Mostly for the great quotes that she knew I would carry with me, but also for the Stoic undertones delivered so softly by this young but wise writer. 

Just like her quote I shared in the beginning, throughout the book you can pick up on the subtle philosophical themes like“Amor Fati” (to not just accept your fate but to love it), the dichotomy of control, and “Memento Mori” (a reminder of your mortality); all of which that embody Stoic principles. 

I am always searching for other female Stoics in history and of this modern era. Although she does not identify as a Stoic – Bianca’s wise words exercise your perspective just the same as the philosophy. Not only in her books but also in how she presents herself in life.

She is a private person not looking for anything other than to connect with a community of women through her work and to share her experiences as a form of healing. She maintains a reserved demeanor while offering valuable wisdom for women.

Her Words, Her Impact : Quotes from the Book

Black and Red Typewriter

On a  broader spectrum, the historical representation of females in literature is very scarce.  When it comes to philosophical perspectives, specifically Stoicism, there is very little to none of women sharing their experiences offering their insights on the intricacies of womanhood. That’s why work from remarkable women such as Bianca is so significant to me. By bringing their work to the forefront, together we can honor and appreciate their contributions while empowering women in the process.

Her words are poetry and poetry is art. Any book that gives you deep introspection into your humanity is art. Your life is art. And in art, each person’s interpretations of it will be different based on their own personal and unique experiences in life. What you take from her words will be a different experience from Susie next to you.

Below, I want to share some passages from the book that resonated with me on a deep level. Each passage comforted me as I was going through my own challenges. 

“Forgive yourself for the way you held yourself back because you didn’t believe in your own potential because you didn’t believe in your capacity to take up space.” 

Too often more times than not, we beat ourselves up. Either for “failing”, or something we may have done or said. 

Then, we beat ourselves up for being a coward, or not moving forward with certain things because we lie to ourselves and minimize its importance. 

And then we beat ourselves up for even thinking such things about ourselves. Like the energizer bunny, it goes on and on and on.

“Do not seek familiarity, do not keep searching for your past in your future. Trust what comes.” 

BAM! This hit me hard. How often do we sabotage something good before we can even reach the fruits of it because we are scared of getting hurt? 

How much energy do we waste in intimate relationships putting rigid rules on each other when we could be enjoying each other, because in the end, what is meant to happen –will happen. And if that super freaking heartbreaking thing never happens, you may have lost something good…along with time wasted sweating over it.

I know I get it. The problem is we fear repeat. That and we actually think we can control what happens. 

But the wise woman knows we cannot. So we must just trust what comes. Good or bad, there is still growth in there. There is a lesson to extract from. And it all just makes you better for it either way.

“Sometimes the most formative way to love another human being is to love them from a distance, is to lay down your hope and your fight, is to know when to wave the white flag and challenge them to show up for themselves. You were not put into this world to fix people who do not want to be fixed. It is okay to walk away from relationships that require you to do so. Forgive yourself for that.”

This phrase was like a hot stone smoothing out a knot in my back. It hurt so fucking good.

Too many times when we think we are loving someone, we are really just hurting them. We are enabling them. We are disarming them, leaving them defenseless to the realities and battles that no one can avoid in this world. Battles that they will meet after we have gone.

And we have this distorted belief that if we don’t take care of them or “help” them, then what kind of people are we?  

I’ve wrestled with this more times than I wanted. More times than I ever should have. But I also know better than to “should” all over myself. 

I’ve had moments where I felt like a terrible mother, friend, or sister, but those experiences have taught me valuable lessons that I can now share with you. And hopefully, cut all of that time in half so you don’t waste as much time as me hating yourself. 

It’s important for women to understand the difference between providing support and fostering dependency on others. You need to know when your efforts are no longer effective. Most importantly to be confident in the energy you put in and after to be satisfied with the hard decision that you had to make.

I already knew this before reading this book, but hearing it from someone who has been in the same position and has overcome self-doubt was super validating. This wisdom specifically tailored for women empowered me immensely.

“Life is a mess–yes, but my god, is it ever a beautiful one” 

bianca sparacino| a gentle reminder

A Gentle Goodbye

In this article, I hope you’ve found something beyond a just book review, but an invitation—to take this wisdom for women and use it to nurture your own inner wisdom. 

To continue your complex and beautiful journey of womanhood where you find strength within your softness and confidence in your imperfections. 

As we come to a close and you now contemplate if you are going to pick up  “A Gentle Reminder” for yourself or for a friend, I just want you to know (and so does Bianca) that in this life–you are not alone. 

Let this gentle reminder stay with you, and may it continue to inspire, heal, and empower you in all the days to come.

As Ever,
V

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