So Far Away: A Daughter's Memoir of Life, Loss, and Love [NOOK Book]


A tale of two very different end-of-life journeys and the daughter who survived them
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So Far Away: A Daughter's Memoir of Life, Loss, and Love

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A tale of two very different end-of-life journeys and the daughter who survived them
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Grief is an individual process and dependent on situations, personalities, and relationships, but Hartmann offers personal discoveries that feel universal. Many readers will find familiar themes and emotions. SO FAR AWAY is a gift for anyone struggling to come to terms with death or depression."
ForeWord Reviews

"This is a powerful book"
The Gerontologist

"Real and engaging while unique and provocative, So Far Away is an absorbing memoir with touching moments and challenging moral choices to consider."

"So Far Away is a powerful memoir of two very different end-of-life journeys that will speak to everyone who has been parented, and who has considered their personal wishes and hopes for their final years."
Luxury Reading

"Hartmann demonstrates considerable courage in sharing her story with the world and her book is a gift to families dealing with the daily challenges of caregiving for their elderly loved ones."
Journal of Women and Aging

"For me, part of the brilliance of So Far Away is that, wrapped up in the exquisitely well-described uniqueness of Hartmann's story about her parents and herself, are substantial insights about anticipatory grief, grief following a parent's death or decline, parent-child relationships at the end of life and after parents die, the links of personal grief to marital relationships, what can be accomplished by writing about parents and parent death, depression, and much more. And although the book is only about one family from one family member's perspective, it offers fascinating insights about families in many areas, including lies and secrets in families, family communication, and what might be called 'relationship traps.' Another part of the brilliance of the book is that the author tunes in so well on her own thoughts and feelings, that it becomes a stimulating book about the psychology of fear, guilt, anger, love, duty, neediness, independence, memory, and obliviousness."
—Paul C. Rosenblatt, University of Minnesota, author of four books on families and grief

"An emotionally powerful memoir that beautifully captures the life-changing journeys of her parents' final years."
—Booth Gardner, former governor, State of Washington, and a leader in the Death with Dignity movement

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780826517975
  • Publisher: Vanderbilt University Press
  • Publication date: 11/15/2011
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 224
  • File size: 658 KB

Meet the Author

Christine W. Hartmann, Research Health Scientist, ENR Memorial Veterans Hospital, Bedford, Massachusetts, and Assistant Professor, Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts, received her PhD at the Bryn Mawr Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research. She has published numerous articles on healthcare quality improvement, focusing particularly on long-term care.
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 28, 2011

    Raw Emotion

    Christine Hartmann has written a family story, but her family was not one you'd likely meet. For twenty years, this daughter lived with the knowledge that her mother planned to end her life while still active, and before she would become a burden to her loved ones. The reader must grapple with the fact that knowing this placed the greatest burden on her family for years beforehand. and I could not comprehend a mother who could do this to her children. The author's strength shows through as she is finally able to accept her mother's wishes, while hoping that she might change her mind. My tears came with the death of her father. This was something with which I could empathize having lost family members, some recently. I think Ms. Hartmann is an unusually strong person and seems to have come out the other side of this darkness even stronger. I wish her all the best. "So Far Away" is a must read.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 22, 2011

    An Ode to Love

    If I could give this memoir 10 stars I would. If you are in a care-giving situation for your parents, buy, beg , borrow or steal a copy of this book. It will comfort and guide you through the loneliness of losing your parents while they are still physically alive.

    SO FAR AWAY has had me crying ¿ no, sobbing ¿ inconsolably for the past two days as I read it. I am drained and exhausted and utterly relieved that I am no longer alone in my journey of grief. That there is a way through this loss; there is even life at the end of this seemingly endless road that has drained all my energy, my enthusiasm and my optimism, turning me ever more isolationist and remote from real life.

    What makes this book special is that Dr Hartmann¿s life, losses and love are mine too. Reading Hartmann¿s story allowed me to cry for her that which I cannot yet cry for myself: the loss of my hero, my ¿pardner,¿ my beloved Dad.

    I could cry, too, for the fading of that strong light that was the hallmark of my courageous Mom, her joie de vivre overshadowed now by the endless day-to-day caring of the physical body that houses the lost soul of her husband and my father.

    Hartmann¿s compassionate, endless caring, the relentless journey to understand both herself and her parent¿s emotional wounds fill this memoir and made me realise that I too carry a deep private grief and double loss inside me.

    She reminds me what I had forgotten: that this cycle of life, too, can be a path of mutual love and respect between special parents and a daughter they had, despite their own wounds and private griefs, always surrounded in love and support.

    The subtitle of this book is that it¿s a ¿memoir about life, loss and love.¿ Ultimately, SO FAR AWAY is simply an Ode to Love and it has gifted me with the memory of love at its best. I know once again that connections forged in love ever remain.

    SO FAR AWAY has "soothed the ragged tears of my heart," and for that I sincerely thank Christine Hartmann for having the courage to share her story with us.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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