So it's very possible that I shouldn't have started this series off with my all time favorite book ever, because then other books have big shoes to feel but here we go! I could not contain my excitement to share this one with you.
A little backstory. I read this book on a trip my husband and I took over Leo's due date in August 2019. The TLDR version is that Leo was born prematurely in April of 2019, but his due date was actually August 23rd 2019. We went to San Francisco and Big Sur and it was a magically healing trip for us.
But back to the book! I have photos of me reading this book by firelight at our little glamping tent in Big Sur, that's how obsessed I was. The sun was down and there wasn't manmade light and I just could. not. stop. I re-read it each August as a way to remind myself how far I have come in my grief, and to remind myself of and sit in the pain from that particular time in life. Now for the highlights:
The book in one line: Lori Gottlieb perfectly captures the sensations of love, loss, joy, and loneliness in this book by sharing her personal story as well as the stories of those who have impacted her life through the therapy she provides.
How this book made me feel: Wow. Amazed. In awe. John and Julie's stories sat with me the most. John for obvious reasons, his son died and he dealt with grief and self-blame. Julie spoke to me as she processed her own life and death because I couldn't help but think about my own, as well as what it meant to have let go of Leo's life. There's a whole lifetime he never gets to live, I pictured spirit-Leo contemplating this for himself wherever he is out in the Universe.
A quote I am hanging on to: "Besides, how can there be an endpoint to love and loss? Do we even want there to be? The price of loving so deeply is feeling so deeply - but it's also a gift, the gift of being alive. If we no longer feel, we should be grieving our own deaths."
What I'm taking away from this book: There is space for the good and the bad. You can complain and be grateful. Things can be impossible and possible. Life can be ugly and beautiful. I am also taking away the recognition that this inanimate object (a book) has become a lifelong companion for me in the way someone might only expect a person to be able to, and that's a beautiful thing.
Thank you for reading with me! Enjoy the bonus content of the beauty of Big Sur, and photo evidence of my obsession with this book.