A collection of columns, subtitled The Wit and Whimsy of Helen Brown would probably not be a likely candidate for a life changing book. But Tomorrow When It’s Summer, changed mine.
A friend who came to visit me a few days after our son had been diagnosed with a degenerative brain disorder told me about the book and said I should read it.
It was some time later, months after Tom had died, that I came across it and started reading.
The tales of family life and domesticity amused me. Then I came to the column which dealt with the death of her son and its aftermath.
I’d read about death and grief before, but that was all academic. This was the first real account of the sheer awfulness of dealing with the death of a child that I’d come across. It made me cry but it also helped by showing me the raw pain, the confusion and despair were normal.
Then I came to the story of the first anniversary of her son’s death and it helped me believe I could find a way through those dark clouds which were enveloping me and I’d find the sun again.
Tomorrow When It’s Summer opened a door to the bereaved parents club for me, showing that learning about the experiences of other people could help and even better the book gave me hope.
Helen has recently published another book, Cleo, how an upppity cat helped heal a family. I read an extract in Next magazine and have bought a copy but have not yet read it. Friends who have tell me it’s wonderful.
Post 12 in the post a day for New Zealand Book Month challenge.
Over at In A Strange Land Deborah posts on Lynley Dodd’s The Smallest Turtle.