Book Review – I’ll Be There to Write the Story

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Maria Ernst Weber’s CIPA EVVY Award-Winning Memoir, I’ll Be There to Write the Story, has been an inspiration to me as a writer and author, a mother and a daughter, and human being in general. Who has never had the experience of loving someone near and dear with whom conflict was a part of the relationship, only to part with them in some fashion—in this case through death—leaving unfinished business, words of reconciliation and resolution unspoken, arms reaching out to hug the one no longer there to fill them in a loving embrace? Those of us who know this troubling of the heart and mind, left behind to struggle with regrets of the past, with wishes, unrequited, to mend fences, reach understandings, and find peace on mutual ground, must find a different path toward healing. I’ll Be There to Write the Story is Maria’s “different path” toward such a profound and sincere healing of the heart after losing her mother to the angels of aging.

SPOILER ALERT! (Though nothing could ever “spoil” this wonderful story!) After Maria’s life-long battle between the love and admiration of her mother and the struggle to free herself to discover her own identity, Maria’s mother passes on, leaving Maria to do what many of us wish we could—make peace with someone we can no longer touch or talk to on this earthly plane. I’ll Be There to Write the Story tells us of the journey Maria takes through the memories of her childhood on up through adulthood as she begins to truly understand her mother anew through the poetry and memories her mother left behind. Learning automatic drawing, visiting spiritual teachers for guidance, and spending countless hours over an entire decade devoted to building her own life while delving into the healing of this part of her old life brings Maria to the place where “the sea meets the sky”—where the old and new become one beautiful horizon upon which to gaze with amazement.

To say I enjoyed this memorable memoir would be quite the understatement. I relished each word, each sentence, and each chapter with an indescribable fervor that was breathtaking. My own mother reaching far beyond her golden years has had me wondering how I will handle the separation when she leaves us for the great beyond. What treasures will she leave behind that will help us learn more about her deepest fears kept hidden “so we won’t worry” all these years? What hopes and dreams did she once have that she’s kept secret, her own personal stories she couldn’t or wouldn’t share for whatever her reason(s)? How will I survive the tearful days of feeling the loss? Or the moments of “I wish mom could be here to see this / or experience this / or help me understand this the way she might have done.” I’ll Be There to Write the Story  has helped prepare me for this upcoming time in my life. In fact, the last section of this brilliantly crafted book provides a plethora of spiritual resources to help guide us all on our own future path.

I’ll Be There to Write the Story inspired me to write my own memoir of a time in my life when I lost my first husband. To cross those miles of memories—the laughter, the tears, the regrets, the gifts—tripled and quadrupled my respect and admiration for Maria Ernst Weber as an author; for her resolve to not only begin such an awe-inspiring trek toward peace and resolution, but also to persevere to the breakthrough point. For anyone who has not written a memoir in this lifetime, but has a similar story of heartbreak and healing to live (and maybe even tell) I highly recommend reading I’ll Be There to Write the Story and to savor each moment of Maria’s story as you learn to savor each moment of your own.

This Memoir is every bit as good or better than any best-selling, award-winning novel or movie you’ve ever indulged your six senses in! I have read it twice so far and will read it again. I am forever grateful for the gift of this book. If you love a well-written, deeply moving, heartfelt story, you will love I’ll Be There to Write the Story!

© Jennifer Sweete, December 2016

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Books I am enjoying reading this holiday season:

Plato and Aristotle. A fascinating study of two philosophers at odds. (Still working my way through the thicket of philosophical reckoning . . .)

The Peculiar Children of Ransom Riggs are quite peculiar! Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children was a work of art! It was easy to get excited about Rigg’s Tales of the Peculiar — I mean, just the book’s binding and colors and artwork alone catch one by the tail . . . and the tale itself, well, that’s a whole peculiar story – actually, quite a few peculiar stories! I think the Peculiars might be holding Riggs ransom . . .

Until we meet again, keep reading, keep writing, keep dreaming!

Jennifer Sweete is the author of Dear Sandy: The letter that wrote itself into a Book (2015) and The Poet & The Widow (2016). She is a Certified Massage Therapist and Usui/Holy Fire Karuna Reiki® Master and teacher, a small business and writer’s consultant, self-mastery coach, musician, poet, and author. And they all fit snugly into the same hat! She’s currently serving her 2nd term as President of the Chaffee County Writers Exchange while assisting other authors through the processes of editing, self-publishing and marketing their books. She resides with her husband, grandson, and furry feline friend in sunny Colorado. For more info, contact her jen@jennifersweete.com.

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