Losing a mother to suicide can be a heartbreak many never recover from.
Sherri Elizabeth Tidwell was only 14 years old when her mother committed suicide. This kind of grief can be extremely complicated.
The young girl’s anguish and yearning for her beloved mother birthed something beautiful for the world.
Sherri offers us a wonderful bouquet of gifts through her book The Daffodils Still Grow: A Book for Grieving Daughters.
Based on her personal story and reflections as she meandered through the meaningless days following her mother’s death, the book is a poem to love. Sherri’s lovely illustrations and words take us through the bleak terrain of loss and grief but move through to reach a field of daffodils.
Poignant moments mark this book: when she sees her mother’s shoes sitting by the door, the grief of going back from school to an empty home, her messy unbraided hair that longed for a mother’s loving care. She mourns the fact that the world keeps moving on while her world has come to a shocking halt where nothing is the same anymore.
The day she looks out the window and sees the daffodils her mother planted is the day hope returns to her heart. In her reflection in the mirror she sees that her mother lives on in her.
I love this book for its powerful and poignant message: what we plant keeps growing in the world long after we exit the earthly journey. This book can be used in a variety of ways, especially for young girls who have lost a beloved mother. It is a great book for those who are depressed and looking for an escape route as well because it affirms the significance of life’s blessings.
- It is a conversation-starter that can help navigate through a difficult topic: death.
- The images are a way to help the young interpret and tell stories of their own feelings in dealing with the loss of a loved one.
- The book is rich in themes: feel your feelings, address the losses, find your way to hope and healing.
- It is a wonderful way to ask profound questions such as: 1) what stays after we are gone? 2) how do we want to be remembered? 3) what kind of legacy do we wish to leave behind? 4) what truly matters in this life? 5) how can we live our lives more meaningfully because of a loss we have suffered?
The last lines of verse: “I know she’s always here with me, and the daffodils still grow” end on a high note of life beyond despair.
The author wishes to underscore the message that “every parent who is considering suicide should read this book so they know how loved they are.”
Losing a mother to suicide didn’t break Sherri. Her mother must be so very proud of her daughter’s offering to the world. As precious as a bunch of beautiful daffodils.