To Love and Let Go: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and Gratitude

October 11, 2019 - Comment

“Rachel beautifully illustrates that loving fiercely and grieving deeply are often two halves of the same whole. Her story will break you down and lift you up.” —Glennon Doyle, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Love Warrior and founder of Together RisingWhile on her way to teach a yoga retreat in March 2014,

“Rachel beautifully illustrates that loving fiercely and grieving deeply are often two halves of the same whole. Her story will break you down and lift you up.” —Glennon Doyle, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Love Warrior and founder of Together Rising

While on her way to teach a yoga retreat in March 2014, Rachel Brathen collapses at an airport, brought to her knees by excruciating stomach pains. She is rushed to the hospital on the tiny island of Bonaire, and hours later forced to undergo surgery. When she wakes up from anesthesia, her boyfriend is weeping at her bedside. While Rachel was struck down with seemingly mysterious pain, her best friend, Andrea, sustained fatal injuries as a result of a car accident. Rachel and Andrea had a magical friendship. Though they looked nothing alike—one girl tall, blond, and Swedish, the other short, brunette, and Colombian—everyone called them gemelas: twins.

Over the three years following Andrea’s death, at what might appear from the outside to be the happiest time—with her engagement to the man she loves and a blossoming career that takes her all over the world—Rachel faces a series of trials that have the potential to define her life. Unresolved grief and trauma from her childhood make the weight of her sadness unbearable. At each turn, she is confronted again and again with a choice: Will she lose it all, succumb to grief, and grasp for control that’s beyond her reach? Or can she move through the loss and let go?

When Rachel and her husband conceive a child, pregnancy becomes a time to heal and an opportunity to be reborn herself. As she recounts this transformative period, Rachel shares her hard-won wisdom about life and death, love and fear, what it means to be a mother and a daughter, and how to become someone who walks through the fire of adversity with the never-ending practice of loving hard and letting go.

Comments

Anonymous says:

Raw, vulnerable, inspiring and healing. There are not enough words to describe how beautiful and powerful this book is. Almost every page had me feeling so emotional and raw. Rachels words felt like they were written just for me. Everytime I finished a chapter I felt so open, so raw yet so grounded and on a path towards my own healing. I didn’t know I needed to read this book until I opened it. Rachel has been my inspiring guide for the last 5yrs. I found her instagram during a dark time of loss for myself and she was going through…

Anonymous says:

A heart felt book for anyone who’s experienced the pain of loss. I was so excited for this book I pre-ordered it in May and it was a beautiful surprise waiting for me yesterday in the mail box. Rachel has such an amazing way of writing about her grief and loss that you cannot help but relate to. Her words are beautiful and this book just goes to show the beautiful heart she also has. I highly recommend this as someone going through my own experience of losing a loved one. I hadn’t found a book that truly spoke to me and the difficult feelings is been going…

Anonymous says:

Learning to heal and knowing you are more than enough. I read this intricately beautiful book in 2 days. It is honest, vulnerable, raw and so incredibly inspiring. All characteristics that completely embody Rachel Brathen. She is a sincere writer and has a way of compassionately drawing the reader in. What she shares is both a relatable and an accessible look into the human experience of love, growth and loss. This book will help so many humans heal and give permission to feel. As a psychotherapist, body image/eating concerns specialist, I…

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