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Summary

Take My Hand: How to be hopeful in a time of grief    

Friends for over 30 years, Kerry and Pat’s worlds came crashing down when their teenage sons were both diagnosed with life-threatening illnesses within weeks of each other.   

They quickly discovered that there was no handbook on coping when your child is seriously ill but took solace in their friendship – texting at all hours and finding glimmers of dark humour on difficult days. Together these two ordinary mothers found a way to navigate their new normal and wanted to share what they’d learnt. With heartfelt honesty, they offer practical, sanity-saving strategies that allow you to keep putting one foot in front of the other when your family is in crisis, including how to:   

  • Tame raging mother guilt. It’s often the elephant in the room. Could I have prevented this happening? Is it all my fault? Kerry and Pat share all the reasons why you shouldn’t blame yourself.    
  • Ask for what you need from the people who want to help but don’t know how – Forget the flowers but please fix the hoover, walk the dog, and pick my other child up from school. Knowing someone else is dealing with everyday chores is a great comfort when you’re already spread too thinly.    
  • Look after yourself (even when you don’t care about yourself). When keeping someone you love alive consumes every scrap of energy, looking after yourself is at the bottom of the priority list. But serious illness can quickly deplete everyone’s resources: Kerry and Pat list all the ways they found to replenish their energy.   
  • Be hopeful in the aftershock of tragedy. Kerry and Pat show you how to move forwards alongside the grief, and still take the joy where you find it rather than waiting for the grief ‘to be over’ to start living again.   

Like a wise companion offering comfort and hope, Take My Hand is a lifeline both to those overwhelmed by heartbreak and for friends and family who don’t know how to help. Most of all, it’s a powerful reminder that no matter how difficult life gets, you are not alone.

©2020 Kerry Fisher, Pat Sowa (P)2020 Hachette UK - Thread

Critic reviews

"Two women on a journey from suffering to hope and inspiring the reader to join them on the road. Inspired and inspiring." (Ged Flynn, CEO of Papyrus Prevention of Young Suicide) 

"Everyone should read itit may just save a life." (Susan Elliot Wright, best-selling author of The Things We Never Said)

"Had me crying from the outset… I found both Kerry and Pat’s stories compelling." (Maxine Walton)   

"It took my breath away. I thought it was brave, honest, and unselfish in the way that throughout the book Kerry and Pat’s motive was to help others!" (Julia Saunders) 

What listeners say about Take My Hand

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Perspective

This is a very brave and moving book by 2 incredibly brave women. Thank you so much for taking the time to write it. It truly puts into perspective what really is important in life. Much love to you both and your families.

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Everyone should read this

So much to learn from this book which explores so many emotions. The reference’s for places to seek help in the last chapter alone could save hours of research. Very moving story of 2 women trying to continue to support each other whilst in the depths of despair themselves. I thought it should be essential reading for parents of teenagers struggling with life & death.

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wordless

the book will hit you on so many levels. I was struck by the strength of this friendship and the sadness that went along

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Thank you Kerry and Pat

This book helped me understanding a very painful experience and my reaction Now I forgive myself and feel less of a disaster full of guilt in my self perceived parenting failings
Well done

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A Must Read For Everyone

Listening to this book will move you to tears. A beautiful, honest and well written book journeying through the lives of two friends whose sons are battling with cancer and mental illness. Everyone should listen to this.

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  • Pam
  • 22-08-20

Painful!

This was the most doom and gloom book I’ve ever read...and I am an avid reader. I got to chapter 23 (out of 35) and I couldn’t listen to any more.