Dietrich Stroeh Author of Three Months: A Care-giving from Heartbreak to Healing shares an excerpt and author interview with WE Magazine for Women.
Here’s his story: Heartbreak Can Become Hope
“Loss is never easy. And when you’ve only got three months left with the person you love, there’s a lot to have to deal with and feel.” J. Dietrich
Stroeh lost his beloved wife Margaret only three months after she was unexpectedly diagnosed with Stage Four pancreatic cancer. In order to help make sense of the journey he embarked upon to take care of her until it was time to say goodbye, he took notes, late at night, that helped him to sort his feelings as well as tasks. After letting her go, he turned his attentions to the notes, breathing new life into them in the hopes that his experience would help ease the journey of others who care for their loved ones.
Three Months: A Caregiving Journey from Heartbreak to Healing (FolkHeart Press) was first published as a paperback. After receiving many requests, the book is now an e-book, and includes new material, including resources for male caregivers and tips about finding lighter moments among the darker and sorrowful ones.
It is a personal story about coming to terms with life’s final passage, preserving the treasured memories one can have with a loved one and healing at a level that inspires love for others.
Here is what the author had to say about his book:
Q: Why did you write this book?
A: Being a caregiver to a woman I loved deeply took me down a windy path with many twists and turns I didn’t know if I navigate. I had to learn a lot, quickly. Since then I’ve learned that others have also been unexpectedly met with similar situations. I wrote this book because I want my experiences to be of benefit to others.
This was a tough book to write and it grew from notes I made to help keep myself focused duurng this vey intense time. Remember, we had only three months from the time of diagnosis to our final goodbye.
Q: How challenging was it to write about a family member?
A: There definitely was much to consider. Ours was a blended family and while Margaret was alive it was important to keep everyone informed of the decisions she and I made about her care and to listen to what their responses were to our choices.
Writing this manuscript, however, was a very personal process. I had to relive again and again countless doctors’ visits, tearful nights without sleep, frustrating impatience, and tender exchanges between us all.
My family was very supportive about my writing this book. They loved Margaret, too, and wanted the world to benefit from our story. Without the prodding of Margaret’s daughter Dona and my three girls, Christina, Jody and Erica, as well as the literary and editorial assistance of my colleagues, I might not have seen this project all the way through.
Q:Why non fiction rather than fiction?
A: Because this was a non-fiction situation. Fictional work is wonderful, but for someone looking for straight forward help,guidance or support, I think non-fiction is the perfect choice.
The book is available at FolkHeart Press. To learn more, visit http://www.threemonthsbook.com .