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Review of A Piece of My Heart
I've read many books on miscarriage and infant loss but most of them didn't make me cry. A Piece of My Heart by Molly Fumia actually did. The book's subtitle is Living Through the Grief of Miscarriage, Stillbirth or Infant Death. The author did experience two miscarriages but she writes mostly about the death of her week-old son.
Still, despite not really addressing miscarriage specifically, I would definately recommend reading the book if you've had a miscarriage (or similar loss). She shares her story with great honesty. She talks about how she had wished she had handled circumstances differently and how she didn't have that realization until many years later. I think that can be a big issue if you've had a miscarriage. With the wisdom of hindsight, there may be many things we wish we'd known or done or done differently. She's realistic about admitting it was a struggle to work out her issues surrounding her son's death. However, at the same time she's optimistic that issues can be resolved even after time has passed.
She writes extensively about meeting and befriending author Elie Wiesel. Wiesel is a Holocaust survivor who has written about his experiences. Fumioa writes "When Elie remembered a million and a half children, I remembered my own." Finally, inspired by Wiesel, Fumia decides that she needs to have a conversation with the son she lost. She includes that conversation as one of her final chapters.
Her last chapter includes very helpful advice about honoring your grief and generally coping with the loss of your baby. I would say the book is worth reading for this chapter alone. Her final chapter is a resource guide listing books, catalogs and online resources.
Fumia lost her son and had her miscarriages in the seventies and eighties when women who had suffered miscarriages and similar losses were not encouraged to really grieve. In an attempt to protect her, she was discouraged from seeing or holding her son. She did go on to have healthy children but learning to cope with her losses took many years. I would definately recommend reading this book.
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