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When Elizabeth Straka’s husband, David, was diagnosed with cancer, she had no idea how they would manage the complex and continuous needs that accompanied his diagnosis. Soon, they realized they were unable to confidently make good decisions, especially without a clear direction ahead. Fortunately, they eventually discovered that finding gratitude and being present allowed them to find light and hope even in their darkest days.

In a tender presentation created from journal entries and reflections, Straka details the emotional experiences of terminal illness, caregiving, loss, and grief while providing compassionate, helpful insights about how to navigate life’s most difficult moments. She begins by detailing their journey prior to cancer as well as the confusing and emotional path that followed David’s diagnosis and continues with her reflections as she begins moving through the different stages of grief after his death. Her shared lessons about the power of presence and gratitude invite others into a safe place where they, too, can come to terms with their own grief and loss.

Joy at the Edges of Grief is an authentic guide to finding the power of presence and gratitude in the midst of a life-challenging illness and deep loss.