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Rue's Butterfly: From Caregiving to Living My Bucket List by [Donna McCart  Welser]

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Rue's Butterfly: From Caregiving to Living My Bucket List Kindle Edition

5.0 out of 5 stars 48 ratings

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Editorial Reviews


  • "In this debut memoir, a woman reflects on the life lessons she learned from caring for her mortally ill husband...Readers who have been through personal or medical trials like the author's will appreciate this upbeat approach as well as Welser's useful advice for surviving the journey (such as having a "go-to" bag that includes Band-Aids, antibacterial spray, and extra pens). This combination of dogged optimism and practical counsel animates the whole volume, adding it to the subgenre of books by authors who have coped with terminal illness...This is very effectively done, and Welser transitions her recollections smoothly to the memoir's final section, which concentrates more on the life lessons she drew from her horrible experience of suddenly finding herself living in a world without the husband with whom she'd planned on spending her entire life. 
    A tough, uplifting account of a spouse's terminal illness—and helpful advice for survivors."
  • 'Generously transparent and thoughtful, Welser gives her all in her writing, providing a lifeline for others caught up in the same inevitability, and solid advice for all to consider the possibilities of tomorrow, whilst living for today. Rue's Butterfly is a highly recommended 5-star read!" ~Book Viral
  • A touching and honest memoir that is bristling with energy. Donna effortlessly moves between humor and grief, revealing insights that come from a fierce life filled with highs and lows." —Kevin A. Kuhn, Award winning author of Do You Realize? A Novel.
  • Donna McCart Welser, a confirmed apocaloptimist, has authored an intimate, yet highly resonant book that is imbued with wisdom, courage, humor and adventure. She invites us to learn from her own hard-earned lessons and - instead of preaching to us - guides us as a trusted friend. - Matthew J. Goldberg, author of Hot Ice Cream: Inspiring Life Lessons from Our Children
  • "In a memoir both heart-wrenching and uplifting, Donna shares her story of surviving the devastating loss of her husband and rebuilding her life in the aftermath. Donna's story resonates with relatability, wit, and the strength that hardship instills in the human spirit." -Zena Logan, Producer, Real Housewives of Orange County, Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.
  • "As a bereaved mother on a forever journey of grief, who has learned to survive and find joy in life again, seeing Donna's feelings of her own grief and the want to push through and heal, confirms that the love of family and friends is what we all need to accept in our times of despair!" -Kelly Lemanowicz, President of Smiles from Kara, a 401c foundation
  • "Pandemics, crisis, and losses are all a part of life. No one said it would be easy. I find easier to navigate when people like Donna share how they navigated their rough times. When you read her story, it makes you see yourself, and you realize you are not alone. She speaks to the apocaloptismist in us all. Don't know what that word means? It's another reason to read this book." -Christopher Hampton - The Champiam Organization, Motivational Teacher and Author of Everyday Leadership For Everyday People
  • "A beautiful story about love and death and perseverance. Donna gets to the heart of the matter and does not shy away from the topic of death but rather throws others a life line to pull through their own journey. I am beyond happy for her that her bucket list keeps growing only because she works hard to consistently complete her goals." Kuri Levine authorAutism with a Side of Sushi
  • "Rue's Butterfly is a book that will grab you and give you a real shake, in a good way. While sad at times, there are many moments of chuckling in between it all. Her approach is refreshing and REAL. This is a quick and impactful read, and one I highly recommend." - Caren Begun, Healthcare Public Relations Professional 
  • "Rue's Butterfly is a masterful piece of writing; sharing a very personal loss and leaving the reader with many opportunities to reflect on their own life's journey. Donna has inoculated my heart with the belief that it is truly possible to live fully again after loss. As a matter of fact, it is not only possible, but intentionally necessary. I wholeheartedly recommend Rue's Butterfly." - Michele Hartel, Wellness Coach 
  •  "5.0 out of 5 stars. This is a hard book to read—not because of the prose, which is clear and graceful—but because of the honesty that Welser brings to her subject. She is unflinching in describing her family's tragedy, but she still maintains her humor and, somehow, her humanity. It's a remarkable book, with lessons for all who have had to deal with suffering and grief around the sickness and loss of a loved one, written by someone who managed to find her way through it, not unscathed, but unbroken." - Daniel J Linke, University Archivist and Deputy Head of Special Collections, Princeton University Library  
  • Welser's narrative inspires others to not just endure their despair but find the motivation to seek personal healing in healthy ways as they establish a "new normal" that will put them on a path back to a happy and productive future... Rue's Butterfly takes a close look at the process of grieving and acceptance and lays out sage advice and logical steps to follow before, during, and after a loved one passes away. In loving detail, Donna Mccart Welser seeks to galvanize the human spirit and reinforce the necessity of living each day to its fullest. - Review by Book Excellence (

From the Author

My dear potential readers, 

Reinvesting in life after the loss of a spouse is difficult, but there is still humor, and one day whether we believe it or not, we find that the sun still shines. In time we learn we are changed; the pain has blurred and dulled on our way to reaching a new normal. Life is full of choices and pivot points where we figure out how because there is no other choice. This book is the story of my "how". One line on my bucket list said "write and publish a book," and I was fortunate enough to find a path by working with Professor Eric Koester, Creator's Institute and New Degree Press. 

If you choose to read this book, I hope you walk away with just one idea that may help you at a pivot point in your own life.

Donna Mc-Welser

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09ZF8YR5N
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ New Degree Press (May 2, 2022)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ May 2, 2022
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 1518 KB
  • Simultaneous device usage ‏ : ‎ Unlimited
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Sticky notes ‏ : ‎ On Kindle Scribe
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 203 pages
  • Customer Reviews:
    5.0 out of 5 stars 48 ratings

About the author

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Donna Welser retired from business and information technology management, after an amazing, thirty-two year long career working for UnitedHealth Group, Optum. She then pursued a master’s in labor and employment relations at Rutgers University, NJ. while also writing her first book.

Donna considers herself an adventurer, apocaloptomist (hopes for the best, prepares for the worst), and world warrior focused on living her bucket list. She and her husband Mark, both previously widowed, took the plunge and married during the COVID pandemic, blending their family of two cats, three dogs, and a full tank of fish in addition to their two daughters, son, and extended families.

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Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on July 11, 2022
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5.0 out of 5 stars Be inspired after loss with Rue’s Butterfly!
Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on July 11, 2022
I have the privilege of knowing the author, as I married her nephew. I was glued to her and Rue’s story. I even learned the story behind Ray’s awesome Mahi Mahi catch picture hanging in their Jim Thorpe vacation home. I also had the privilege to read this book while staying in their Jim Thorpe home. As our trip came to a close I thought about Ray pulling down the driveway one last time with sadness but then I smiled because I know he’d be so proud of Donna for picking up her bucket list torch and learning to let love in again. Thank you for sharing your personal story with the world, this book will inspire many! Off to start my bucket list!
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