This is such a stunning book: so insightful about the meaning and purpose of our lives, so beautifully written, and incredibly honest. Basically it's bloody fabulous (as we would say in Australian parlance). And so sad when the 37-year-old author, a neurosurgeon and scientist, dies. It's an absolute must-read, especially for anyone facing their own mortality, (that's all of us isn't it?) and for those who surround and love them. An inspiring story that will live on long after the last page is read. Long live the memory of Paul Kalanithi. Que Viva! After my latest book, Fraying: Mum, memory loss, the medical maze and me, was published, I was often asked to speak about end of life. Fraying was written from the perspective of a daughter, with no medical qualifications; a daughter struggling with the medical maze and the decisions to be made. When Breath Becomes Air is from a medical professional's perspective, one who becomes the patient. The questions Paul and his wife, Lucy Kalanithi, must face, and dare to ask, are confronting. But they are also, in essence, questions about what it means to be human, and at what point living becomes too much of a burden. This book is a precious gift to readers. Michele's website: www.michelegierck.com.au
It's great getting reader responses to Fraying. So many people whose parents have had dementia have written to me, and I find their stories so moving. Here's a few lines received this week. 'I purchased a copy of Fraying and I simply couldn't put it down. It was like I was reading my own life experiences with my mother... Thank you so much for writing this story for me too. It will remain a most treasured book on my bookshelf and shared with others.' All I can say is thank you, thank you to readers. The more we share our stories, the richer the community. Stories, after all, are our treasures. Michele Gierck Author/Freelance Writer/Speaker
Author, Michele Gierck, will be speaking at an Alzheimer's Australia South Australia event on Wednesday 23 September, 2015. It's a fab day, all part of Dementia Awareness Month. (For the fine details, please go to the Alzheimer's Australia SA website.) At 7.30pm that evening, Michele will be part of a panel speaking about dementia on ABC Radio, Adelaide, with host Peter Goers, broadcasting across South Australia. Naturally she will be speaking about her book, Fraying: Mum, memory loss, the medical maze and me.
How fab, having Alzheimer's Australia VIC endorse my latest book, Fraying: Mum, memory loss, the medical maze and me, as a good read. Underneath this endorsement Carers Victoria commented: 'It is great. We are looking at having Michele speak with carers during National Carers Week in October. Very insightful and honest.' As the author, I am delighted by this positive response. (And all the likes.) Great to see that news about the book is spreading. Refer Facebook page: Alzheimer's Australia VIC, 25 June, 2015
How good it is to find your special spot. A place to relax, to calm, to be. A place to listen, to be drawn into the moment. (No phones, ipads or laptops here!) There's been quite a bit of media and a number of talks given since the release of my latest book, Fraying: Mum, memory loss, the medical maze and me, in March. Now, it's time to get back to basics, create a calm space ... and write. Yes, all the talks and interviews are enjoyable, but at heart the joy of writing is one that for me cannot be quelled. If I don't write, I feel a part of myself is missing. For those interested, I will be back speaking again in September, during Dementia Awareness Month. More details soon.
Waiting for your new book to be released (launched) is like having a ticket overseas and waiting for the journey to happen. So much anticipation. Will you rocket down the road ahead, reaching some fabulous pinnacle? Or ... Well, let's see what happens when Fraying: Mum, memory loss, the medical maze and me is launched later this month. (So far there's lots of interest!) You can catch Richard Fidler's Radio National interview with Michele, (that's me) on 25 February at: http://www.abc.net.au/local/sites/conversations/ The 55-minute interview will be podcast and can be listened to online any time after the interview. For more information about Michele's new book check out her website: http://michelegierck.com.au/fraying/ Image and text copyright Michele Gierck Photo: Road to Aoraki/MtCook, New Zealand