Pushing up the Sky

Terra Trevor’s ‘Pushing up the Sky’ is a revelation of the struggles and triumphs packed into the hyphens between Korean and Native American and American. From her, we learn that adoption can best be mutual, that the adoptive parent needs acculturation in the child’s ways. With unflinching honesty and unfailing love, Trevor details the risks and heartaches of taking in, the bittersweetness of letting go, and the everlasting bonds that grow between them all. With ‘Pushing up the Sky’, the ‘literature of adoption’ comes of age as literature, worthy of an honored place in the human story.

—Reviewed by Robert Bensen, Editor of Children of the Dragonfly: Native American Voices on Child Custody and Education, The University of Arizona Press. 

A mixed blood Native American, Terra Trevor and her white husband had one child before choosing to complete their family through adoption. They adopted from South Korea twice: an infant with medical needs, and an older child. There are two stories in Terra Trevor’s personal accountThe first is about her oldest daughter experiencing difficulty adjusting to adoption and becoming the oldest child. The second story is about her son, also adopted from Korea, diagnosed with a brain tumor, and how this family, or any family, must endure crises and tragedy and still find a way to go on. This is a story of compromises and insights, profound joy, deep suffering, and terrific rewards. Parenting birth and adopted children, is one theme of this book. Most of all, it is a story on the meaning of family, and learning to let go of expectations and to forge a new identity.

The title ‘Pushing up the Sky,’ is from a Native American story about the power of people working together for a common good, this is the theme in Terra Trevor's memoir.

Hardcover: 230 pages
  • Publisher: KAAN; 1st edition (July 29, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0977604608
  • ISBN-13: 978-0977604609
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Terra Trevor is a widely published writer of a diverse body of work. She is a contributing author of 10 books, including Birthed From Scorched Hearts: Women Respond To War, Fulcrum Publishing, The People Who Stayed: Southeastern Indian Writing After Removal, The University of Oklahoma Press and The Foster Parenting Toolbox, EMK Press.  Her writing is included in Narrative Inquiry in Bioethics and Voices Confronting Pediatric Brain Tumors, published by Johns Hopkins University Press, and she is a contributor to a variety of journals and blogs, including Yellow Medicine Review, The Raven Chronicles and The Huffington Post. 

Within Wordcraft Circle of Native Writers and Storytellers mentoring core she helps beginning and emerging writers refine their skills. Born in 1953 to a mixed blood family of Cherokee, Delaware, Seneca descent, and raised in southeast Los Angeles, with roots in Colorado and Oklahoma, her life was divided into two seasons; winter and camping, and the home she carries within is mountains and pine trees.

Pushing up the Sky is widely anthologized, with excerpts in landmark anthologies including Children of the Dragonfly: Native American Voices On Child Custody and Education, The University of Arizona Press.