I Did Not Know What To Say Blog

Virtual Book Tour – From Sorrow to Dancing by Marcy Kelly

Posted by ididnotknowwhattosay on December 1, 2009

Thank you for joining us on our Virtual Book Tour.

Today we Welcome Marcy Kelly, the author of From Sorrow to Dancing.  We are delighted that Marcy has been able to provide us with her insights and suggestions on how to assist a loved that has lost their spouse.  Please feel free to comment or share your own experiences with grief and the healing process in the comment section below.

From Sorrow to Dancing is featured on our Helpful Books page under Grief Support.

And here is our interview with Marcy Kelly… 

What inspired you to write the book From Sorrow to Dancing?

I wrote my book because becoming widow tears out your heart and can seem to make you into half the person you were before being thrust into this terrible situation.  Being widowed is certainly not something anyone would aspire to be in life but it is a fact of life for many, many women and men.  As a result of having to go through this situation twice, and actually becoming a whole person who has hope again, I thought I had something to say that might help others.

You lost both of your husbands at an early age, how did losing your husbands change your life?

I lost my first husband after 15 years of marriage when I was 35 years of age.  When he died, I had a nine year old son, a high school education with a few college credits, and a lot of fear about the future.  After I emerged from the cloud of trauma which sets in after a death, I felt the responsibility to continue living because my son needed a mom.  So, I got back into life the best I could.

I remarried 13 months later, and started what I hoped would be a great marriage with a secure life for my son.  The marriage was great, and my son bonded well with his step-dad.  We had been married for 15 years when he also died of cancer.  When I was widowed the second time, my son was grown with a job and a new wife.  I thought this time that there was no reason for me to go on in life.  My son didn’t need me, my husband was gone, I had no real career that I cared about.  I was depressed and sad.  All I wanted to do was to curl up in bed and never get up.  It took me a few years to get back into life and into feeling that life was worth living.

How is the death of a spouse different from divorce?

Although I have never been divorced, I have spoken with many people who have been divorced and my answer comes from those discussions.  I am certainly not an expert on this question.  However, one thing I realize is that when someone dies, all hope is gone.  There is no chance that reconciliation can happen when the person is dead.  I was fortunate to have good marriages so the anger that goes with betrayal, rejection, and other parts of divorce was not something I experienced.  Loss is loss, regardless of the reason.  It needs to be grieved.

How does losing a spouse differ from losing a parent, a sibling or another immediate family member?

I think losing a spouse is different from losing a parent because, hopefully, when one gets married and starts her own family, she moves away from her parents and bonds to her husband.  If the family of origin is a close family, the pain of losing a parent will be greatly felt and needs to be recognized and grieved.  That being said, when the husband is gone, a big part of the wife goes away as well.  Grief over losing a anyone is very horrendous and not to be minimized.  All grieving is difficult.

I understand that losing a child is very different, and since I have never experienced that type of grief, I am not qualified to speak about it.  I have also never lost a sibling so I cannot comment on that pain.

Is there any one thing that your family or friends did for you that assisted you through the grieving process?  (i.e. a special card someone sent you, a favorite place they took you, listened when you needed support, etc.)

In my book, From Sorrow to Dancing, I recount several things that people did for me after each of my husbands died.  An example would be a woman named Victoria who asked what she could do for me immediately after my first husband died.  I really couldn’t think of anything at that time so I suggested she might want to call me in three months to see if I needed anything.  To my amazement, she called three months later.  I still didn’t need anything but I have never forgotten her kindness in remembering me.

What do you wish your family or friends had done differently after you lost your husband? 

My family and friends were extremely supportive and helpful after the death of each husband so I can’t think of anything they should have done differently.  In my book I recount the story of Jean whose husband committed suicide while they were separated due to marriage problems.  Jean’s in-laws blamed her for the suicide and were harsh as they isolated Jean from the rest of the family during the funeral.  Jean had a very difficult time getting over the pain of the way she had been treated.

What is one thing you would like your readers to take away from your book?

I want people to realize that life for the widow does not have to end when her husband dies.  Yes, her life will greatly change and it will be painful and hard for awhile.  However, the choices the widow makes are what determine whether she also dies (literally or figuratively) or whether she moves through the grief into the rest of her life.  There is hope and joy in the future if she chooses to move toward it.

What are your top four suggestions to help people move forward in the grieving process?

  1. Do a personal check concerning your attitude.  Are you bitter?  If so, learn to forgive.
  2. Give yourself and others grace to make mistakes during the grieving process.
  3. Put off making big decisions for at least a year.
  4. Be around caring people and allow them to help you.

What do you want our readers to know about you and/or your book?

I want the readers to know that I am a regular mom and wife who has lived through some very difficult times.  I have made many mistakes and don’t know everything there is to know about grieving but I do know that when my husbands died, I made a choice to act in a way that would make people want to be around me.  I didn’t want to be bitter or angry (that would be the easy way to react to my pain).  I wanted to leave “sunshine in my tracks” so that when people had been in my presence they would come away feeling better than before.  I worked hard to change my attitude and in doing so, I moved into a new, good life.

I also want people to know that I believe one of the biggest reasons I got through the grieving so completely was because of my faith in God.  Prayer and faith are truly healing.

Do you plan to write any other books?

At this time, I don’t have any plans for another book but we never know what the future will bring.

From Sorrow to Dancing is featured on ourHelpful Bookspage under Grief Support.


6 Responses to “Virtual Book Tour – From Sorrow to Dancing by Marcy Kelly”

  1. John Lynch said

    I found the top four suggestions to help me move forward to be especially appropriate for the stage I am in. Thank you.

    – J L

  2. Dance said


    […]Virtual Book Tour – From Sorrow to Dancing by Marcy Kelly « I Did Not Know What To Say Blog[…]…

  3. […] Interview with Marcy Kelly – From Sorrow to Dancing […]

  4. […] Interview with Marcy Kelly – From Sorrow to Dancing […]

  5. […] Interview with Marcy Kelly – From Sorrow to Dancing […]

  6. […] Interview with Marcy Kelly – From Sorrow to Dancing […]

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