Tuesday, June 24, 2014

A Highly Recommended Book for Everyone

I read this wonderful book called Global Mom:A Memoir by Melissa Dalton-Bradford. It was a wonderful and difficult book to read, wonderful because Dalton-Bradford has an ability to write such profound prose in a simple, yet elegant way. It was difficult because three-quarters of the way through the book her oldest son dies suddenly and the rest of the book deals with the grief and aftermath of that loss. I was not expecting it and rightly it resurfaced my own feelings of grief that I have a tendency to suppress. But the way she wrote about grief affected me greatly. She normalized it for me in a way that no one had done before.

Then I discovered she was completing a second book, On Loss and Living Onward, that was solely about loss. I awaited for it's publication and ordered it from Amazon and as soon as it came I plunged into it. This book is one that will never sit on a shelf. This book is one that will jump from table to table in my home from hand to hand as I share it with my family and friends. This is a book that I open for the comforting knowledge that others understand my grief because they have been through it.

This book recounts the Dalton-Bradford family's experience with loss and in between touching and telling examples from personal experience, she has compiled sections of quotations on different subjects relating to loss. There is a chapter of quotations on the healing aspect of crying, on having others mourn with you, on a new reality, on so many other subjects. The quotes come from scripture, books, president's, celebrities, but they are ALL so so good.

This book has helped me understand that grief is both unique and universal. It has helped me realize I am not alone and also how I can help others to know that they are not alone.

If you think that this book isn't really meant for you, you are wrong. I truly believe everyone can benefit from this book whether you have experienced personal loss or not. This book will help you succor and support those around you, it will help you make a little more sense of this tragic world we all live in.

Buy it for yourself, for your grieving friend, for your mother and father and for your neighbor. Buy it and read it and turn to it when loss hits close to your home. Refer to it for inspiration and help to know how to be a guiding angel for others.

I know that before we experienced our own loss I never had any clue how to help others and usually I would address it with "they need space" and ultimately felt like too much time had passed for me to jump on board and mourn with them. But the reality is that no one ever truly "gets over" grief, it just becomes a part of their reality, thoughts they live with everyday. So it is NEVER too late and I believe this book can help others understand that and what to do with that knowledge.

You can buy it on Amazon here or at Barnes and Noble here.

What I Could Write About

I haven't been quite sure what to write about. This happens when too many thoughts, ideas, and plans fill my mind, which is often.

I could write about pregnancy after loss and the anxiety that ebbs and flows with each day and how no matter what I can't quite find my footing.

I could write about the fact that we are moving in one week and we sold ALL of our furniture back in December except for our mattress, Max's handmade bed (made by his grandpa), a shelf, and a children's IKEA table with two child-sized chairs. We have had to find furniture to fill our home within a two week period which I thought would be fun, but when you are trying to find it all at once...it is not so fun.

I could write about the fact that we have been bouncing around from guestroom to spare room, to mattress on the floor this past month and how I just want to be somewhere for more than a week at a time...

I could write about how much I love summer, the fresh fruit, the cool morning air, sitting outside all the time, how I miss working at Camp Dudley every single time June rolls around, and how this will be my third summer being pregnant. This is the second consecutive pregnant summer and while I am extremely grateful to be pregnant, I really miss rock climbing and doing other fun summer things like uninhibited.

I could write about how hilarious Maxwell is getting, how he recounts events in stream-of-conscious form often circling back to the same event over and over. He loves staying here at my mom's house because there is endless fun. A dog, trampoline, his aunt Margaret and her iPad, toys, and there is always someone who will turn on The Incredibles for him. Plus it has been a nice break for me to be surrounded by so many willing watchful eyes.

For now I will focus my thoughts on the excitement that awaits each day. I am grateful for the opportunities for work our family has and the opportunity to prepare for our family to grow and expand, even though it is nerve-wracking. A lot of thoughts means a lot to be grateful for and if I try really hard I can focus on that and the rest sorta melts away.

 (All of these pictures were taken back in May while we were still living in Idaho, I was about 24 weeks pregnant)