ABOUT THE BOOK
From the jacket copy:
William & Wendell: A Family Remembered
by Donnali Fifield offers reassurance, and a welcome measure of relief, for those who are
struggling to recover from a loss.
Therapy, she writes, has added a
"subtle burden by converting grief from a fundamental human experience into a
therapeutic process whose goal is to overcome the loss." By pointing out why the
theory of a cathartic resolution is oppressive, she provides a thoughtful and different
perspective on the current view of grief.
She came to this conclusion from her
own wrenching experience. In 1990, she lost both of her twin children. Wendell
Fifield-Freeman died two days after birth. His brother, William, lived for three months
but suffered the complications of prematurity, including cerebral palsy. Their deaths were
the last in a series of tragedies that began with the murder-suicide of her half brother's
family in 1987.
As she recounts her realization that
she would not heal but would have to live with a changed, more painful reality, she makes
an original contribution to the understanding of bereavement. Articulating hidden, often
unacknowledged aspects of grief, this incisive and probing book will speak to anyone who
feels inadequate because of the contemporary expectations of recovery.
More than simply a poignant chronicle,
William & Wendell: A Family Remembered also has surprising flashes of wry humor
and evocative passages about her childhood in Provence, as the author links past and
present in a singular work of remembrance.