I was given the opportunity to review Sunshine After the Storm: A Survival Guide for the Grieving Mother. I was provided a Kindle copy of this book for purposes of this review. The opinions expressed are entirely mine.
Sunshine After the Storm is a collection of items written by mothers finding their way after the loss of a baby or child. Some of these items are poems, others are a few paragraphs, and others are a few pages. Each item in some way shows how that mother dealt with the loss of their baby or child.
Many of the contributors (but not all) had miscarriages or still births, ranging in time from a few weeks to full term. Others lost babies to Twin-to-Twin Transmission Syndrome. I had the ability to hold Daniel and nurture him for almost 5 years. Many of these women never had that chance.
I will always be a grieving mom, just like all these women. Some of them have other children (both older and younger than the one they lost), but that doesn't take away the grief and feelings of loss - not just of the child but of what the child would become.
There is also a chapter on grieving dads. Men grieve very differently than women. Most of that is due to societal expectations. Having this section provides some helpful insight for women.
The book is broken down into chapters (topics) and inside the chapters are scenarios (the written items). The chapters and the scenarios do not need to be read in any particular order, although I did read it from beginning to end in order to write this review.
There were many times that I had tears streaming down my face as I read some of the scenarios. The emotions that flow from the words are powerful. Although I have never experienced a miscarriage or a still birth, I learned from these women that the loss is just as powerful and the feelings and emotions associated with their loss are just the same as those of a mother who has lost a child at an older age.
The scenarios are not just for those who are grieving. There are lessons to be learned for those who have not directly experienced the loss - like friends or relatives.
I especially liked the list of resources at the end of the book. There are many great resources listed, including support groups and entities created by some of the contributors to the book. There is also a "Grief To-Do List" for the grieving mother to provide to others. The items on the checklist are simple things, but mean lot to many who are grieving.
I still have days where my grief is more present than other days. Knowing that other moms, for whatever reason, are also feeling the grief months and years later is comforting. When I need that support from other moms, I know that these women are never further from me than my Kindle.
Sunshine After the Storm: A Survival Guide for the Grieving Mother is available on Amazon. You can read more about the book and the contributors at the book's website Sunshine After the Storm.