In Don’t Give Me Any Grief, Cathy Pendola reflects on the thoughts and feelings that filled her days following the sudden death of her nineteen-year-old son Dominic. Surreal experiences such as picking out his funeral clothes and the heartache of cleaning his room for the first time are explored fearlessly and poetically in the hopes that her journey through loss will provide a path for other parents who know the same pain.
Countering grief-speak words including “closure” and “new normal,” and frankly declaring there will never be an answer to the question “why,” Pendola’s stories and poems make room for grief—hers and yours—and by doing so, invite the possibility of hope and healing.
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Words from the Author: Standing in the baggage claim at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, Catherine Pendola retrieved a message on her cell phone that began: “This is the Denton County Police. It’s about your son, Dominic.”
Those eleven words began a journey to understand, as a mother, what it means to be a mother who’s lost a child.
It’s impossible to imagine or prepare for this kind of tragedy. The call comes, and suddenly you’re forgotten how to live; eating, talking, and simply taking a breath seem unmanageable, and yet, somehow, you’re expected to get through this day, and the next.
In Don’t Give Me Any Grief, Catherine shares her personal story of loss, exploring from a day-to-day and a holistic sense how life is transformed by heartache and how life marches on after it. Through personal narrative and poems, she creates a space that explores grief honestly, extending a hand to any parent who feels alone in their thoughts and feelings, looking for a way to make sense of life after loss.