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After Miscarriage: A Catholic Woman's Companion to Healing & Hope Paperback – January 19, 2012


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After Miscarriage: A Catholic Woman's Companion to Healing & Hope + A Guide For Fathers: When A Baby Dies + Empty Arms: Coping With Miscarriage, Stillbirth and Infant Death
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 132 pages
  • Publisher: Servant Books (January 19, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0867169974
  • ISBN-13: 978-0867169973
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.3 x 6.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #261,357 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

KAREN EDMISTEN is the author of The Rosary: Keeping Company with Jesus and Mary and Through the Year with Mary: 365 Reflections, both published by Servant Books. A popular blogger and a regular guest on Relevant Radio, she is also a contributor to Atheist to Catholic: Stories of Conversion. She lives in Norfolk, Nebraska.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Yes, you most likely will cry reading it.
Therese Heckenkamp
I recommend this book not only to parents who have lost a child but to friends and family who feel at a loss in supporting them in their grief.
Melanie B
This lovely and sorely needed book will powerfully and tenderly touch your soul with abiding comfort and blessing.
Donna M. Cooper Oboyle

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Therese Heckenkamp on July 30, 2012
Format: Paperback
I read this entire book mere days after my miscarriage, when the grief and devastation were still so raw and unrelenting. My heart and soul were crying for answers. I always turn to books when I need more information, but this time I needed more than information--so much more--and I found it in "After Miscarriage: A Catholic Woman's Companion to Healing & Hope" by Karen Edmisten.

This book is perfectly titled. It won't give you long-winded insensitive medical theories. Instead, it addresses the all-too-often overlooked issues of how much a woman's heart and soul and faith are wounded by miscarriage. A woman needs to know she's not alone or overreacting in feeling like her world has ended, and the real-life stories in this book give you that sense of shared suffering. They helped me to wrap my mind around the hard reality, but in a completely compassionate, therapeutic way.

The connection with other women and their stories is made even deeper because we share the same faith, yet with an understanding that faith doesn't mean that miscarriage is easier for us or any less devastating. It also lets you know that that no matter what anyone may think or say, you have the right to mourn and remember your child--no matter how tiny that child, no matter how short a time your child lived. It is perfectly normal to love and miss your child beyond measure.

And as a Catholic, the fact that my baby had not been able to be Baptized before dying, hit hard. I found immense comfort in the words in this book: "[God] loves our babies even more than we are able, and the best thing we can do is to place all our trust and hope in Him. The Catechism of the Catholic Church says: 'God has bound salvation to the sacrament of Baptism, but he himself is not bound by his sacraments' (CCC, #1257).
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Melanie B on February 20, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
There is no template for how to grieve for a miscarried baby. Especially if you lose your child in the first trimester when so many people don't consider them to be a real person. Often there is no funeral, no physical reminder, no memorial, no mementos. And worst of all no community of friends and family to support you in your grieving the loss of a life that many of them never knew existed. People don't know what to say to you when you've lost a baby. They say the wrong things or say nothing at all.

Karen Edmisten has created a beautiful treasury of words to comfort grieving parents. She shares the stories of her own miscarriages and she has collected stories from other parents. Also beautiful poems and prayers, passages from scripture and other quotes. Karen has a knack of picking just the right words and weaves them into a beautiful tapestry. This is not a sugar-coated book. Some of the stories are raw. I had thought I was done grieving but I found that as I read my tears flowed again and again. Apparently grief was not done with me.

I recommend this book not only to parents who have lost a child but to friends and family who feel at a loss in supporting them in their grief. I also recommend it to nurses, doctors, counselors, anyone who will come into contact with women who have miscarried. During and after my own miscarriage I found that often the medical professionals did not know how to provide words of comfort and spiritual healing.

In the interests of full disclosure I should mention that Karen was kind enough to include in this book a short poem that I wrote that was inspired by my own miscarriage. It is a privilege to be included in this beautiful collection and I hope and pray that this volume will bring comfort and healing to many mothers and fathers who are grieving.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Terri B! on May 1, 2012
Format: Paperback
I'm a mom of 4 living children, that has recently suffered my second, 2nd trimester loss. Knowing the long journey ahead, that grief comes in waves, I put this book aside after receiving it as a gift. I picked it up around the anniversary of my first loss, and it was balm to the soul. I found myself nodding my head, tears streaming down my face, heart pierced by words I was reading, unable to utter them myself. I began to make some sense out of my sheer sorrow. This book is a go to for anyone who wants to support parents who have lost, or a requirement in a grieving ministry.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Amanda on December 16, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The most helpful book I've read since my miscarriage, Karen Edmisten's After Miscarriage is a hodge-podge of short contributions from various people who have lost a child, poems, quotes, bible passages, and pieces from the author's journal. Many of the poems, quotes, and scripture passages did not deal directly with miscarriage or even death (though some certainly did), which helped me understand the universality of the emotions I felt. I also appreciated the shortness of it all - no single piece within the book is more than a few pages long, so I could pick it up, read a short passage or a single quote and put it back down if it were too much all at once. That said, I read it all in just a few days, though I feel like I will continue to refer back to it often during the difficult times in the coming months and years (especially if we experience a future loss).

After having five miscarriages, Edmisten herself has experienced a range of emotions and put these into a short but thorough resource for Catholic women after pregnancy loss. It is a blessing to read others' experiences and realize that the strange new emotions I was feeling are actually "normal" for the context. Reading through the various pieces by women (and a man) who have "been there" made me feel much less alone, especially since I have very few people in my daily life who have had a miscarriage. I found myself relating to most of the passages, and even those I did not personally find connection with helped me understand how others' grieving processes may differ from my own. I found the book to be very nurturing and uplifting, free of platitudes and generalizations.

My only critique of this book is of a poem it contains that referred to a baby having a "pair of wings".
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More About the Author

Karen Edmisten, a former atheist who converted to Catholicism at the age of 35, is a freelance writer, frequent guest on Catholic radio, and the author of The Rosary: Keeping Company with Jesus and Mary, Through the Year with Mary, After Miscarriage, and Deathbed Conversions: Finding Faith at the Finish Line. She has contributed to several other books, including Style, Sex, and Substance, Atheist to Catholic, and A Little Way of Homeschooling, as well as writing for a variety of magazines. Born on Cape Cod, Karen has lived in Washington, Alaska, Florida, and Nebraska.

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