Bethany’s Calendar review
Elaine Marie Cooper
Purchase on Amazon
See more about the Book and Author here, starting Sunday, Dec. 14
Poignant reflection and brave advice for the grieving.
From the author’s introduction of her family heartbreak, through the honest and vulnerable challenges of home and social life through this difficult time, to the joy of remembering, Bethany’s Calendar will touch every reader.
The one thing Elaine Cooper was certain she never do after she realized a dream of writing fiction based on family history was the write about the death of her daughter to cancer. It took a decade before Cooper heeded the gentle nudges and was able to put the story into perspective and make it more than a reflection, but also a guide to help others who are in grief. It is a story not just for a family suffering through trauma, but everyone who intersects with them. Advice on how to approach, when, or even whether, people who are in treatment, in pain, or caring for loved ones in pain, is offered with each of the 35 short chapters, as well as in an ending segment, Things We Learned.
The Coopers rejoiced when their daughter Bethany, a valedictorian and caring, resourceful young woman, went to college. The first three years were on task, as expected. The fourth was a strange struggle for her, as well as inexplicable changes in her personality. An attempt at independent living and work across country failed, as did a dream job at home. Drugs were ruled out, as was a psychotic break. Physical tests done after a bizarre episode at home which resulted in a police pick-up and subsequent several-day stay in a hospital psychiatric unit revealed the devastating news that Bethany had cancer in her brain.
While the author’s training as a nurse helped her understand the physical issues involved with treatment, and that there would be no recovery, the emotional distress for the family and friends is never something anyone can prepare for.