Book Reviews

What people are saying about Still....
Back Cover Reviews   

“Still  is the poignant exposition of the reality that besets more than 25,000 pregnant families each year in the US.  Stephanie Cole’s portrayal of the year following Madeline’s death is vivid and stark, and speaks to the disbelief and emptiness of the 50% of parents who never discover why their unborn baby died.  Stephanie’s year deprived of an infant is illustrative of the challenge families and those who care for them face when experiencing the loss of an unborn child.  Each child is a special chapter in every family’s life, even if that chapter is but a few, heartbreaking pages of limited memories.  Still is important reading for those who experience pregnancy loss.  Perhaps it is more important reading for those who have not shared the experience but wish to understand.”

Dr. John J. Botti, Maternal-Fetal Medicine

 

" Still. shows us how look at grief and our different kind of parenting even when we feel overwhelmed by the chaos.  Stephanie models for us how to journal, paint, sculpt, shatter, glue together, take a poetic view.  All of these are tools we can use to look askew and try to get a handle on our experience when looking straight on is just too much.  Stephanie does not prescribe one single way. She does not claim to have the fix or the exact path we must all adhere to.  But rather she shares all the tools she used.  She gives you the choice to try what feels right to you.  She models one way and leaves all the other branches off the path open for you to try as you need and want."

Kara L.C. Jones, Grief & Creativity Coach at MotherHenna.com


“Stephanie’s honesty and candor are refreshing in a society that wants everything, even mourning, wrapped up in some sort of neat package.  She allows us to walk her path with her, acknowledging that everyone’s journey will be unique and that we will eventually accept what will become our new normal."

Beth Gauthier, Mother to Mark (stillborn, Feb 2007)

                            

“Stephanie writes from a place of honesty and raw emotion.  Throughout her writing she weaves the dreams she and her husband had for their precious daughter Madeline.  Her words help the reader understand the depth of pain felt by parents who experience the death of a much loved and hoped for baby.  A great read for any professional who wants to gain a better  understanding of the emotions and feelings of a grieving parent.”

Chaplain Carolanne Hauck, Bereavement Coordinator




please email Stephanie@sweetpeaproject.org if you would like to share your review.

Comments From Readers



"I just wept my way through Still. Thank you for deciding to tell your story with candor and rawness -- such bravery. It resonates because you have truly shared. I felt as if I was reading my own thoughts and words. The darkness of the first days and weeks. What one must do: leave the hospital, arrange a burial/cremation/ceremony/ritual... You write about how to live in the 2 worlds.  You are a beacon for me as a mother of 3... So thank you for your book Stephanie. It is a gift for me, and kept me company on my couch at the end of this day so that I could pass some needed tears and just be for a bit." ~C

"I received your book this week. Yesterday, I sat down to read a bit and couldn't stop. No one could take me away from reading Still, until I had completed the entire book. Still is a wonderfully written piece. Close friends or relatives of someone who have lost a baby should read this book. It provides the most accurate of feelings, thoughts, emotions, etc. It can provide a great insight to how we feel as the parents and how to handle us. For those of us who have endured this pain, it's confirmation of our feelings and knowing we are not alone in this horrible tragedy. I am so sorry Madeline was taken from you and your family. It's so wrong on so many levels. Thank you for writing and publishing this valuable piece and doing what you are are doing for the next unfortunate parents."   ~S

"I ordered your book, it arrived on Tuesday.  It touched me at the very core of my pain and sorrow.  Thank you for baring your soul to the world to represent those of us who are sometimes without the words to express that which we feel so deeply."    ~L

"I made it to page nine... the tears are flowing.  I have read your heart, it was like looking into a mirror and reading my heart outside of my own body. You are amazing Stephanie, I thank you for sharing."    ~T

"I read it cover to cover. It was amazing!!!!! I hope it can get into the hands of every mom who loses a baby as soon as possible after the loss. You have a way of putting feelings into words that is just perfect. I think it will help women really identify their feelings and not feel crazy about doing it. I always have such a hard time knowing what it is I'm feeling, and I think Still. would have really helped me know my emotions about my miscarriages better. And it will certainly help women who have lost babies feel less alone, which is such a horrible feeling. For the people who care enough to read it just because they care about someone who's experienced the loss of a baby, well, I don't think we'll ever know how much pain might be prevented by careless words that won't be uttered and how much comfort might come from more carefully chosen actions and words. Awesome job, Stephanie!"    ~C

"I miscarried in March of 2010. I have never been in so much pain in all my life. I feel absolutely lost and I don't know how to move forward. My heart is worse shape 4 months after loosing our baby than it was two weeks after loosing our baby. Your book is amazing, I too am at a loss for words. You have put all my feelings and emotions on paper, I don't feel so alone anymore. Thank you for sharing your story! Thank you for providing a wonderful resource for grieving mothers!" ~C

"Stephanie, I finished your book today in the shade of the public pool under a perfectly blue sky with the puffiest, white clouds floating high above. My husband took the day off work and we all went together with our two-year-old daughter, Sadie. I got into the water for a few minutes. But I couldn't stand watching everyone splashing around, looking so happy.  I'm so glad I packed your book. I picked up where I left off and finished it in less than two hours. I wanted to thank you for what you've written, what you've shared. I've been keeping a blog online and writing in a few different journals - one I started before Sawyer was born and one that I received from the hospital. I try to be so honest, especially on my blog, that I sometimes worry about what people think of me - "The mother of the dead baby." And your book has inspired me to continue writing and sharing my pain, anguish, grief, frustration and whatever other emotion strikes me - with the world. What you've done is more than brave - it has shown that we all have our own story to tell. And you told yours in the hopes that it brings some kind of comfort to another mother, facing the same nightmare that we all could never imagine living through - yet here I am. And here you are. And we are living through it."    ~M

"Stephanie, I'm not too far into the book but I've read "Thursday" about 5 times.  I don't even know if I can explain the way it moved me.  When I got home this afternoon I saw the book in the mailbox and immediately ripped it open and just sat down on the couch and stared at it.  Sounds silly since we've never met in person but it was a great feeling seeing your final product in front of me, knowing how much you've put into it, all of your
heart and soul and hard work.  I can't wait to read the rest."    ~A

"I got your book today I am at a loss for words.....That is the most emotionally charged book I have EVER read! I am so very proud of you for writing your story and sharing it with others in the hopes that the readers will find some comfort within it's pages. I really wish I could write or paint as a way to deal with my grieving( my brother passed away unexpectedly in January), although I think I am going buy some flower pots to smash. Thanks for writing this book Stephanie, it helped me, and I just read it!"    ~B

"This is about the heartbreaking loss of a child from the mother's point of view. I have never before read a book with such raw, charged emotion displayed within the pages. The author's strength and honesty to openly talk about something that is never openly discussed is refreshing. I would recommend this book to anyone and everyone."   ~A

"I personally have never experienced this overwhelming grief. But i have a dear friend who has. And this book not only helped her. It helped me as well. Being an outsider looking in and not knowing what to say or how to comfort her. Stephanie's honesty on her feelings towards the outside world after her loss, opened my eyes. I NOW understand so much more, how they are feeling and what they are wanting out of everyone around them. I'm so glad that there is this book out there to not only comfort so many that go through this every year. But to guide the others who need answers on how to comfort their loved ones through this." ~D


"Written from a mother who had a stillbirth, also beneficial for mothers who have had a miscarriage. I experienced a miscarriage in March of 2010, roughly 4 months ago. I have never felt so alone with some many emotions and questions and not a single answer. I found a lot of comfort in Still. I wouldn't wish this pain on anybody else; at the same time it is comforting to know that I am not alone in all these feelings, emotions, and questions.  Thank you Stephanie, for providing a wonderful resource, there really isn't much out there." ~C

"This book is such a great resource for people that will inevitably experience a stillbirth. My son was stillborn December 28, 2009 and reading Stephanie's book made me realize that I was not alone in this nightmare....that there are other women, other mothers out there that are going through this too. At times when I was reading STILL I felt as though my own thoughts and feelings were being reflected. She made it feel not so lonely to lose your baby. Her art is inspiring and it is nice to see her affect the world in a positive way form such a difficult experience. Madeline is so proud of her mommy and hopefully she is playing with Max. Thank you Stephanie for opening your heart up to the world." ~N


"This book is a fast read and a must read for anyone who has experienced a stillborn child. I think this book would be very helpful to anyone who has lost a child, however the loss came about. If you are someone who knows someone who has lost a child, this book can help you understand the raw pain your friend or family member is in. If you are a medical professional who works with expectant moms, this book would make you a better professional, and it's something you could share with patients if tragedy should strike one of them. I hope it can get into the hands of every mom who loses a baby as soon as possible after the loss. The author has a way of putting feelings into words that is just perfect. I think it will help women really identify their feelings and not feel crazy about doing it. I wish I had had it right after my miscarriages. It will certainly help parents who have lost babies feel less alone, which is such a horrible feeling. For the people who care enough to read it just because they care about someone who's experienced the loss of a baby, well, I don't think we'll ever know how much pain might be prevented by careless words that won't be uttered and how much comfort might come from more carefully chosen actions and words." ~C

"I made it to page 13 with only a few sniffles...page 13 hit me like a blow..."I've cradled death in my arms, in my body. Given birth to it." That's when I broke and had to close the book for awhile. So poignant, so real. So raw.  I have gone back and finished the book now Stephanie, and I loved, understood and lived every single word of it. Thank you for having the courage to put our feelings out in the open...you are so brave." ~N

"I read Still. in one sitting this weekend. I cried and smiled and thought of you and sweet baby Madeline and our twins. Sometimes the pain can still be so raw. Thank you for sharing your writings and your artwork with the world. It means so much!" ~S

"I got the book. I read it as soon as I got it. I gotta admit, I had to stop a couple times to shed some tears but it also made me laugh at times. I think it's wonderful that you were able to publish your book to express how you feel about your beautiful angel and your experience." ~M

"I just finished your book! It was the most amazing, heart touching thing I have ever read!! When you described the day you found out your sweet Madeline had left this world, was much like what happened to me. I could totally relate to that day, as you wrote about it. I also could relate to when you said you wanted to break everything. I felt the same way!! I loved the art work and what you did with the flower pots you broke. Thank you for much for sharing your story with us! You are an inspiration to all of us angel mom's!! You have given us a voice!!"  ~L

"I received my book last week and I love it.  I thought it was absolutely wonderful.  I read it straight through the first time and have re-read parts of it this week.  It describes exactly how I felt/feel and it was nice to know I am not alone.  Thank you for writing it!"   ~H



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