“Lisa was fantastic always! She communicated with me and my granddaughter Max who helped me, very well all the time. Thank you Lisa.”
Joan Pendergast is a BSRN graduate of Skidmore College, and has practiced public health and hospital nursing in New Haven, Connecticut, and Providence, Rhode Island. She is the author of Markings of Mercy, The Story of After Abortion Helpline and several poetry publications in the New Boston Post. Married to Jack for fifty-eight years, Joan is the mother of six children and grandmother and great grandmother of twenty-one grandchildren. She resides in Providence, Rhode Island.
“Why share your grief in a book,” you might say. “That’s private stuff. You don’t go parading it all over the place.” Well it’s precisely because others have done just that, that I’ve been able to move along through my grief. Grief is so disorienting, disabling, frightening and painful that we need the help of others to get through it. One can feel so isolated, alone and confused that a word, a sentence, or a thought from another grieving person can take us out of isolation and bring us back to life. My wonderful Jack and I were married for fifty-eight years. As he suffered at the end of his life from cancer, undifferentiated squamous cell carcinoma, I was able to write about the deep pain of our impending separation in order to name it and process it. When he passed on June 12, 2014, I continued to write to him and to the Lord, love letters, through the pain of my grief. Sometimes sorrowful, sometimes joyful, this compilation of letters, poems, prayers, and reflections is an intimate portrait of my love for my husband and for God. It also expresses my struggle to come to terms with the mysteries of marriage, love, death, and loss. Writing helped me survive the terrible grief I experienced, that many experience after losing a loved one. We all grieve in our own way, and I hope this book will help you as others have helped me.