A week after her beloved husband died of cancer, Andrea Gilats found the new silence in her home crushing. "I decided that I would simply resume talking with him, both aloud and in daily letters," she writes in her memoir of grief, "After Effects." And write to him she did, every day, for two years. But it didn't help. The grief that she experienced over her loss was profound, debilitating, life-limiting — and nothing helped.
"I had lost my ability to think," she writes. She stopped listening to music, stopped painting, had trouble reading and sleeping. She lost her taste for food. The longtime director of the Split Rock Arts Program in Duluth, Gilats was wrapped in a profound grief that affected her life for 20 years. "Prolonged grief disorder" is not well known but affects as many as one of every seven people who lose a loved one. Gilats' story of loss, despair and eventual peace is a roadmap of despair and recovery.
She'll launch the book at 7 p.m. Feb 10 in a virtual conversation with writer Catherine Madison hosted by SubText Books in St. Paul. Register here: https://www.crowdcast.io/e/andrea-gilats-for-after/register