It was about a year ago when, in the mail, came this book – “Rare Bird: A Memoir of Loss and Love“. On the front was stamped “Advance reading copy * Not for sale”. Anna, the author, had sent it to me to read and review. And here’s what happened next…
I flipped open the pages, past the foreword by Glennon Doyle Melton (founder of Momastry) and landed on chapter fourteen. And I read the words that I, myself, have spoken no less than a thousand time, “But, grief is so exhausting”. In those five words I knew that this mother intimately knew the scars on my own heart. I felt like she could see through my flesh and ribs right into the core of what brought me the most heart ache I had ever felt.
She gets me. She too has lost a child and understands like no one else can.
Her book is a real time reflection of the first months/year after her son, Jack, was swept away in an unexpected flash flood in their suburban neighborhood. She shares her heart with the raw emotion we’ve all experienced but haven’t put to paper.
Below I have shared my favorite quote from her book:
“And it’s tricky. Because hurting people want to understand; we want to know why. But we don’t want people coming to conclusions for us, feeding us neat little answers of what God’s will is and how His mind and heart work. No, thank you.”
Ok, just one more favorite quote…
“I understand now there is no way to get an A in grief. I can just be honest about my feelings, try to live gently with others, and when that’s too hard, give myself a little break and find some distance.”
And, just wait until you read the part when they decide to move from the house they lived in when Jack was alive…. get the tissue, an entire box, because it’s so hard to read and so beautiful.
A few months later I connected with this beautiful soul and asked for an interview. Talking with Anna was just like reading her book. It was like snuggling around an old farmhouse table, coffee in hand, and sharing stories that are familiar, raw and full of healing purpose.
And if I had to describe her in one word, I would use one of my favorite words… Kind. And don’t we all need more kind people in our lives?
Rather than bore you with writing all the goodness from the book, there’s too much to cover in just one blog post, I am sharing the interview below. I guarantee it will help you feel connected to another Mom who lost a child and help give your heart at least one more healing stitch.
And since I know you’re are going to want to buy the book, below is the link to take you straight to Amazon and get your copy. Seriously, you need this book in your grief arsenal!
Tweet: A great book for your #grief arsenal. “Rare Bird” @aninchofgray. http://bit.ly/1LOR7lK #childloss #bookreview [click to tweet!]
Click below to listen to this incredible interview!
(seriously… I had no idea my face would be that big!)
Tell me what you think + follow Anna!
In the comments below, tell me what you think about the book and the interview. And be sure to share this with others you know could use some healing love.
If you want to follow Anna (and why wouldn’t you?) her info is below.
Facebook: An Inch of Gray
Website: An Inch of Gray Blogspot
And, one more link to the book… I would lone you mine, but it’s all highlighted and worn out! 🙂
Anna Whiston-Donaldson is a popular blogger at An Inch of Gray. A graduate of Wake Forest University, she taught high-school English for six years before becoming a full-time mom and writer. Whe lives with her husband, Tim, and daughter Margaret, in suburban Washington D.C.