Grief at the Holidays - A SeniorNavigator e-Quicktip

Grief at the Holidays - A SeniorNavigator e-Quicktip

The Central Rappahannock Regional Library is a SeniorNavigator Center.  Here's the latest SeniorNavigator e-quicktip:

Grief at the Holidays

"Happy Holidays!" is a greeting often heard this time of year.  However, if you are grieving over the loss of a loved one, the holiday season may be anything but happy for you.  Visit the following link for suggestions that will help you cope with grief during the holidays. 

Have You Seen Marie? by Sandra Cisneros, Illustrated by Ester Hernandez

Have You Seen Marie? cover

Have You Seen Marie? is a picture book, but it is aimed at adults. The author and illustrator created it as an attempt to help them deal with their grief, for each of them has lost a parent. 

The story is about Sandra Cisneros who suffered from depression after her mother’s death. Her doctor encouraged the author to take antidepressants, but she resisted taking medication. Her friend came to visit her and while there lost her cat, Marie. The act of trying to find her friend’s cat forced Cisneros out of the house and into the world again in order to help her friend. This picture book introduces all of her colorful neighbors as she tries to find Marie.

Tolstoy and the Purple Chair: My Year of Magical Reading by Nina Sandovitch

Tolstoy and the Purple Chair

Nina Sankovitch is an avid reader as is her whole family.  They have turned to books for generations for joy and comfort.  When her sister Ann-Marie dies from cancer, Nina goes into a depression until she decides to take steps to get her life back in order by giving up her job as a lawyer and reading a book a day for a year.  This memoir is the progression that she makes from grief to joy over the course of the year.  Tolstoy and the Purple Chair is so eloquent, so beautifully written that it has become one of my favorite books. Nina shares so much wisdom that it is the kind of book that you would like to keep to read over and over again.  There were many times that I wanted to stop reading long enough to yell out, “Yes, Nina!!  You are so wonderful!” 

The Good Neighbor Cookbook by Sara Quessenberry and Suzanne Schlosberg

The Good Neighbor Cookbook

There are definitely times when friends and neighbors need a little comfort food. It might be a joyful event--new baby, new house--or it might be in sorrowful times such as a long illness, death, or divorce. Chef Sara Quessenberry and writer Suzanne Schlosberg’s The Good Neighbor Cookbook is an excellent source for the family cook who needs some fresh ideas for food to share.

Recipes range from savory (Smoky Corn Chowder) to sweet (Roasted Almond Chocolate Chip Cookies). They are designed to satisfy, to travel well, and to not require a lot of fussing in the kitchen. Although these recipes work great for times of crisis, these same qualities make them great for book club gatherings, church potlucks, or business breakfasts.

Shakespeare Bats Cleanup

By Ron Koertge

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When a fourteen-year-old baseball player catches mononucleosis, he discovers that keeping a journal and experimenting with poetry not only helps fill the time, it also helps him deal with life, love, and loss.
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A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius

By Dave Eggers

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"The literary sensation of the year, a book that redefines both family and narrative for the twenty-first century. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius is the moving memoir of a college senior who, in the space of five weeks, loses both of his parents to cancer and inherits his eight-year-old brother. Here is an exhilarating debut that manages to be simultaneously hilarious and wildly inventive as well as a deeply heartfelt story of the love that holds a family together."

Also available on audio.

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When Bad Things Happen to Good People

By Harold S. Kushner

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Elisabeth Kubler-Ross said this book "Offers a moving and humane approach to understanding life's windstorms..." Rabbi Kushner's book, still very popular more than 20 years after it was firt published, tells of his turmoil as he tried to understand the loss of his son.  Also available in large print.

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Mars and Venus Starting Over: A Practical Guide to Finding Love Again After a Painful Breakup, Divorce, or the Loss of a Loved One

By John Gray

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"Mars & Venus Starting Over opens the door to finding a rich and fulfilling lifetime of love once again. The first section of the book addresses the part of the healing process that is basically the same for men and women. Dealing with the pain of a breakup or loss is not easy, and John Gray makes it clear that although the pain of loss is an inevitable part of life, suffering is not. He explains that the heart often lags behind the mind, that we must experience our grief in order tobecome whole again. He compassionately shows us how to find forgiveness and explains how good endings make good beginnings. Although the healing process is fundamentally the same, starting over on Venus is often different from starting over on Mars. Women tend to push love away to avoid getting hurt again. On the other hand, men often get involved right away, but have trouble committing. Part two, 'Starting Over on Venus,' explores the twenty-three common challenges..." faced by women. Part three, 'Starting Over on Mars,' address the men's issues.

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On My Own at 107: Reflections on Life without Bessie

By Sarah L. Delany with Amy Hill Hearth

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The surviving sister of the pair whose story was told in Having Our Say recounts her transition from mourning the loss of her sister, Bessie, to a renewed zest for life, symbolized by Bessie's flower garden.

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When the Bough Breaks: Forever after the Death of a Son or Daughter

By Judith R. Bernstein

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Author Judith R. Bernstein, Ph.D., speaks from the dual perspectives of bereaved parent and psychologist. She weaves keen psychological insight with the voices of parents to achieve a book that is at once heartbreaking and heartwarming.
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