Today is my dad’s birthday, he would have been 63 years old, but sadly I lost him to a sudden heart attack five months ago. Although my grief has settled a bit he is very much on my mind this month so I thought I’d use books as a form of therapy; seeing the commonality of loss and gain a sense of normalcy in something that doesn’t sit so comfortably in one’s reality.
H is for Hawk by Helen Macdonald. I wasn’t two pages in before a sense of familiarity crept under my skin. The role of nature in her life, a father’s wisdom of patience, and the overwhelming and selfish sense of loss that causes you to turn in on yourself. I also discovered there was a thirty year difference between her and her father, just like me and mine. Helen and I are in the same club; that was the instant draw for me, but I also got lost in the tale of this woman’s obsession. I found myself forgetting about my own loss pages and pages at a time and began to wander with her in the journey of her and her goshawk. Continue reading “Bus Reads for September”
In the last month, four people have died suddenly or tragically who I did not know well but I am close friends with some of their families, friends or co-workers. And, I’ve just heard about a nephew planning to get married later this year. So I eerily feel like I’m writing a story called “Four Funerals and a Wedding.” During this emotional time, knowing that I work in libraries, some friends have asked me for suggestions on what to read maybe now or later. Here are just a few of the helpful ones found by searching in the catalog.
The neighborhood is alive with gardeners mowing lawns, and trimming hedges, the mechanized hiss of twirling sprinklers and for those just joining us, it’s a beautiful day and Hailey is dead and I have nothing to do, nowhere to be. ~How to Talk to a Widower
From 1960s TV sitcoms such as the Andy Griffith Show and The Courtship of Eddie’s Father we have seen the widower portrayed, but what about the modern widower’s story? How does one truly handle the loss when the setting isn’t picture perfect Mayberry?
After the death of his wife, Joe Warr, played by Clive Owen, has to step back from his career as a traveling sportwriter and come to terms with not only the tragic loss of his wife, but the raising of their six-year-old son without a mother. When his teenage son from a previous marriage joins the mix, it is an experiment of raising sons without female influence. With his “just say yes” philosophy — which includes water balloon fights indoors, riding on the hood of the car and jumping into bathtubs — the standards of parenting are stretched and altered. In the movie The Boys Are Back, which is based on the memoir The Boys are Back in Town by Joe Carr, life may be Continue reading “The Modern Widower”