Wilder believes that grieving people are lost: so few understand what is happening with their heart and mind. She also believes that the subject is largely shunned, because even those wishing to give comfort are inevitably reminded of their own mortality and the mortality of the ones they love.
Above and Beyond Wellfleet is also a love story. Wilder writes, "Facing tragic loss tears us to the bone. It is hard to know who we are anymore; we;'ve been knocked off our gyroscope, tipped off balance because we have lost an integral part of our being. That is what love is all about; you cleave to the one you love and when they are physically gone, you are diminished, almost disappearing in the aftermath of that loss." A story of resilience and courage, love and loss, and, above all the struggle to find joy in life when your heart is broken, the words will stay with you long after you close the book.
Above and Beyond Wellfleet was written about the ten-year journey recovering from the death of a spouse, the book has resonated with readers who have experienced loss caused by the death of a parent, the death of love through divorce, and the agony of a loved one's suicide.
Above and Beyond Wellfleet is a book that will make you examine your own life, whether or not you've suffered loss. This book also serves as a wonderful reminder for all of us that we need to take control of what happens next. Not only can Above and Beyond Wellfleet help people heal, it is also thought provoking on a host of family and aging issues.
During the decade-long journey in which her book was written, Wilder traveled alone, bought and sold two homes, and made her instincts her new partner. She whittled down her possessions, faced the prospect of living alone for the rest of her life, and most important, she began to see that life can begin again.
The stories in Above and Beyond Wellfleet are a peek into a heart that was breaking. The book is a memoir about love lost and courage gained. While grief is universal, each person's response is unique. The stories are about the unwelcome challenge of learning to live alone, not by choice but by circumstance. They are about the monumental and the mundane aspects of coping with loss and learning how to create a new way of living.
Wilder acknowledges in Above and Beyond Wellfleet that the "letting go" must be tempered while holding on to memories that keep the loved one alive in the corner of our hearts-but not taking up so much space that there isn't room for joy. In the words of Kahil Gibran, "joy and sorrow are inseparable...together they come and when one sits alone with you-remember the other is asleep on your bed."
|Publisher:||Tiny Tomes Publishing|
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.20(d)|
About the Author
One of the bleakest moments in her life was when her husband died after a long battle with cancer. Above and Beyond Wellfeet chronicles Wilder's experiences in the decade following his death.
The ability to tell herself the truth is one of her salvations. It matters to her that she lives a truthful life. "Sometimes,"Wilder says, "a certain amount of denial can be healthy. Knowing when to chuck it and face the truth is tricky."Admitting that the end was near shortly before her husband died, gave Wilder the strength ultimately to accept it.
Wilder sold her husband's and her beautiful Cape Cod home (meant to be where they retired to live a long and healthy life) just months after he died, going against advice proffered to all who have suffered significant loss: Make no irreversible decisions for a year. Instead, she followed what her instincts were telling her to do. Wilder admits that she does have an inner voice, one that she listens to through her writing. The book cover painting -the title of which is "Above Wellfleet" --jump started her decision to sell the house and is the subject in the first chapter of the book.
For many years, Wilder wrote for others in her professional life as a public relations professional. Her decision to begin to write for herself was prompted by her belief that those experiencing grief were often left alone in their misery. She hopes her book will become a companion that can be summoned in the middle of the night at 3AM-which Wilder calls the universal hour of grief when the night terrors strike and family and friends are asleep.
Above and Beyond Wellfleet is a tiny book about a ponderous subject. She deliberately made the decision to write a spare book, believing that the grieving person is unable to cope with even the most simple tasks and that the mind--a condition that she calls "grief brain"-- has been put temporarily on hold making it impossible to absorb much information.
In getting to know Connie Wilder, this person who's written a book about grief, it's obvious that she has smiled through sadness. She believes most grieving people do smile, wearing it as a mask to hide their real feelings. Above and Beyond Wellfleet exposes the real heartache, and the journey toward making the broken heart whole again.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
helped soothe my soul after our daughter's suicide over a year ago.
I just finished reading Constance Wilder's book. I enjoyed every chapter. Connie's insights into dealing with life after the passing of a spouse are heartwarming. This is not your typical what to do after death type of book. Her stories and memories of life with her husband and life after his death are interesting. I especially liked what Connie did with their set of wedding bands. I won't spoil the book by telling you. I enjoyed her description of the "Saturday night syndrome". That is very true of single people too. I would highly recommend this book. It is a treasure for someone dealing with the passing of a spouse. It is also a great book for both women and men who treasure their independence or those wishing they could feel secure in their independence.