The Collision of Grief and Gratitude + Giveaway
Book Title: The Collision of Grief and Gratitude: A Pursuit of Sacred Light
Author: Rosanne Liesveld
Category: Adult Non-fiction, 468 pages
Genre: Self-Help, Death & Grief, Grief & Bereavement
Publisher: Illuminatio Press
Release date: May 16, 2017
Tour dates: July 16 to Aug 10, 2018
Content Rating: PG (The subject of loss is explored and some of the emotions may be too raw for young children.)
"And so each day goes; the grief and the gratitude fighting for the bigger spot in my heart. The tug of war between these emotions exhausts me most days. If you see me in the grief mode, you'll think I'm a wreck. But if you see me in gratitude mode, you'll think I m doing well. Neither is 100 percent true. I am what I am most days, leaning toward finding more gratitude than grief as the days turn into weeks and the weeks into months."
After the unexpected death of her husband, Rosanne Liesveld felt a desperate need to communicate gratitude to those who helped her through the shock that death left in its wake. The day of Curt's funeral, Rosanne wrote a Facebook post expressing how, in the midst of profound grief, she found a space in her heart for gratitude. The next day, she wrote another post; then another.
Rosanne's daily posts throughout her first year of widowhood attracted hundreds to follow along on her journey. Her words inspired those who were not only grieving in some way, but those who wanted to build stronger relationships or live life with more intention and gratitude. It was messy. It was raw. And it was healing.
Rosanne's posts have been compiled into this 366-day journey and are accompanied by beautiful photos taken by Curt.
To follow the tour, please visit Rosanne Liesveld's page on iRead Book Tours.
Buy the Book:
Meet the Author:
As a coach and teacher for more than thirty years with the Gallup Organization, Rosanne has helped people discover and lean into their strengths. She now speaks to groups about how to build stronger relationships, and live life with more intention and gratitude.
Connect with the author: Facebook
Guest Blog Post by Rosanne Liesveld
Author of The Collision of Grief and Gratitude
What I’ve Learned About Marriage from the Other Side of the Grave
Rosanne Liesveld is the author of The Collision of Grief and Gratitude. After the unexpected death of her husband, she felt a desperate need to communicate gratitude to those who helped her through the shock his death left in its wake. A few days after Curt’s funeral, Rosanne wrote a Facebook post expressing how, in the midst of profound grief, she found a space in heart for gratitude. The next day she wrote another post, and then another.
Rosanne’s daily posts throughout her first year of widowhood inspired not only those who were grieving in some way, but those who wanted to build stronger relationships and life live with more intention and gratitude. It was messy. It was raw. It was healing.
After writing 366 days of posts on Facebook and then deciding to retrofit them into a book, I had to decide what the thesis of my book actually was. The Collision of Grief and Gratitude emerged, rather than being crafted according to an outline or plan. Writing was a reaction to what poured out of my heart after the most shocking loss of my life. The messages on the pages were scattered, spontaneous thoughts that reflected my profound grief and my daily search for even a miniscule bit of gratitude.
But there was an underlying theme, to my grief and to my book; marriage. It makes sense. Curt and were high school sweethearts and had been married forty-three years. We had a marriage that was admired, desired, and emulated. Then he collapsed while mowing the lawn and was gone. It was natural that much of my writing in those first weeks and months were about that marriage. This time, however, the reflections were from me view on the other side of life. Or maybe on the other side of the grave.
There are so many “how-to” books on marriage. In fact, Curt and I had planned to write one of those books. As I look back at many of posts, I find there still is some hint of “how to” in the words that were often written through tears of grief and gratitude.
One theme around marriage was that of intimacy. What is intimacy? I know now that intimacy is about revealing one’s soul, mind, heart, and body. If I were to help people think about how to invest more in their relationships, I would start with intimacy.
What does that mean to have intimacy of soul? I think it means sharing our deepest thoughts, as hard as that might be. That may mean setting specific times and dates for deep conversations. That may mean being alone together more often. All alone. That may mean writing things down when it’s too hard to say them out loud. That may mean saying far more positive intimate things than anything remotely negative.
Intimacy of mind sometimes may mean just talking about your ideas and thoughts. Intellectual discourse between partners sometimes seems like it gets checked at the altar. The sharing of words and concepts can be extremely stimulating. It can even be romantic.
Intimacy of heart is often about sharing your deepest emotions and desires. Fears. Passions. Crazy joy. Passionate love. Reading the cards that my husband wrote me through the years gives me some of the most tangible memories of real intimacy of heart.
We are often afraid to talk about intimacy of body. After forty-three years of marriage, we knew and valued physical intimacy. Touching a face. Putting a hand on a knee. Grabbing a hand at a time and place where it wasn’t necessarily appropriate. Running fingers through hair. Hugging with both arms around each other loosely or tightly. Passionate, intimate moments that are too personal to ever describe.
Just days before my husband died, it was raining gently on the pond in our back yard. We stood arm in arm with the door open, letting the rain splash on us and watch the sensuous pings of the droplets hitting that pond. We both were moved to such powerful feelings of intimacy. That evening is seared in my memory.
Let intimacy happen in your marriage. If it doesn’t just happen, make work of it. Open the door when it rains so you can watch it, smell it, hear it, and experience it together. Slip an arm around your spouse, even if it seems awkward. Say the words. Write the words. Just do it.
From the other side of the grave, it is the thing that you will never regret and never forget.
Rosanne is available to chat with groups or book clubs either in person or via Zoom. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
She is also the author of Teach with Strengths: How Great Teachers Inspire Students, a book she wrote in a more conventional way with JoAnn Miller and Jennifer Robinson for Gallup Press.
Enter the Giveaway!
Ends Aug 18, 2018