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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Book Review: Breathing Room by Leeana Tankersley

unnamed (2)AN INVITATION TO BREATHE:  Catastrophe or no catastrophe, if you are unhinged, disoriented, suffocating, or otherwise generally dragging, I'm inviting you to pull up a chair at this table . . .

Breathing Room is a beautiful release of self-condemnation, a discovery of the rest that comes when we offer ourselves some space to breathe. Vulnerable and winsome, Leeana Tankersley shows you how to stop beating yourself up, how to be radically on your own team, and how to truly experience grace. If you've been putting on a strong front and yet are secretly coming apart, you'll find in these pages a trusted friend.

"Leeana says out loud the things we all feel, and she says it with grace and eloquence. Reading these pages is like sitting with a friend."--Shauna Niequist, author of Bread & Wine.

"Leeana refuses to reach for easy answers, instead leading the reader on a journey of accepting our own humanity. Quite simply, this is one of the most thoughtful books I've read all year."--Emily P. Freeman, author of A Million Little Ways.

Leeana Tankersley holds English degrees from Liberty University and West Virginia University. She and her Navy SEAL husband, Steve, are currently stationed in San Diego, California, with their three children: Luke, Lane, and Elle. Leeana writes about living from the spacious place on her blog,


I love this book.  Leeana is a real person and you can tell from this book.  You can feel it in what she says and how she says it.  My favorite quotes:

“I haven’t always known how to inhabit my own feelings.  I haven’t always known how to let life be both hard and good.  I haven’t always known how to make peach with the paradoxes and texture of life…”

“Let go of the lies on the exhale, so we can take in the truth on the inhale.”

“If today, if this hour, if this year has not been what you had hoped you can begin again…We must wake up and choose to live in each minute, each day, each year.  Moment by moment…”

  “We know it’s not OK to bully other people, but somehow we forgot—or never learned—that it’s not OK to bully ourselves.”

The opposite of holding our breath isn’t inhaling. It’s letting go.”

“Show up and participate in what life has in front of you, in what God is doing in your life. Continue to lean in. Continue to open your eyes. Continue to scout the beauty. Continue to create. Continue to love.  Continue to get well. Continue to breathe.” 

Leeana reminds us of the most important thing….it is okay to feel what you are feeling.  Sometimes when we voice our feelings, those around us tell us we are not “allowed” to feel that way because life is too good, or you’re too skinny, or so good at your job, or whatever, to feel that way.  Leeana reminds us that you don’t have to justify your feelings, whatever, they may be.  You can feel it. It’s okay.

Leeana is so good at encouraging you to keep going.  I would recommend everyone who is going through a rough patch or has ever gone through a rough patch to read Breathing Room.

This book is considered a Christian book which is good.  What I really liked is that it talks about faith and grace.  I found it refreshing to read about a woman who has faith who still experiences sadness and depression and everything that goes with those feelings who takes a normal, healthy approach to getting through it. 

I consider myself a Christian in that I believe in God and have faith but I don’t particularly care for books that tout Scripture endlessly. I want to hear from real people like me who experience these feelings but find a way to pull through it.  So this book was perfect for me!


I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.

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