by Harriet Sarnoff Schiff
|Schiff begins with a tale about a prince fleeing from revolutionaries
who want to kill him. The prince seeks shelter in a peasant's cottage and
the peasant hides him under his bed. The pursuers come and search
the house and prod the bed with knives, but leave when they cannot find
him. The prince, grateful to the peasant for saving his life, grants
him three favors. After asking for two very simple favors, the peasant
asks as his third request that the prince tell him how he felt when the
knives were pushed through the bed.
The prince becomes angry and shouts, "How dare you offend majesty by
asking my emotions? For this I will have you beheaded tomorrow."
The next day, as the terrified peasant awaiting his execution kneels on
the block, a soldier rides up and hands the peasant a note which reads,
"As your final favor you wanted to know how I felt under that bed when
the revolutionaries came. I
In this powerful introduction Schiff explains how some things are beyond describing, "No matter how eloquent the words, their impact can fall flat when not accompanied by a similar experience. And so it is with bereaved parents. No one has gone through this catastrophe without thinking sometime or other that you can't possibly know what it feels like!"
A bereaved parent herself, Schiff takes us through the painful
journey of coping with the loss of a child. She describes the
initial numbness and intense grief that follows. The author also deals
with the issues of guilt, marriage, siblings, religion, functioning, pleasure,
communication, and the
How many of us can identify with those same feelings! Yet she
offers hope that things do get
Reviewed by Anita Becker
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