A woman who raised her family in Pitt Meadows for 30 years returns to launch a book and provide the many friends of her late son with answers on the causes of his death.
Author Cathy Stewart will be presenting her book “Hope the Alchemy of Despair” at St. Luke’s Church Hall on November 21 at 2 pm.
This is the story of this mother’s devastating grief following the suicide of her eldest son, Alistair in 2014. She wanted to return to her hometown to release the book, to the many people who knew and loved Alistair.
“He was magical – he was very popular with everyone,” she said. “No one could understand why he would kill himself.”
Hundreds of people attended Alistair’s Celebration of Life in Stanley Park. He was 38 when he committed suicide in a forest in Maple Ridge.
Cathy and her husband Willie raised their sons Alistair and James in Pitt Meadows from 1977 to 2006. They now live in Qualicum Beach.
“It is important for me to present this book to the many people who have known and loved Alistair,” she said. “Equally important and one of the themes of this book is to attempt to de-stigmatize suicide. The people of these communities have played an important role and contributed in all of our lives and it is essential to try to provide answers to some unanswered questions. “
Cathy was a psychiatric nurse and clinician by trade, but has always been a writer and journalist. At the age of 72, she started Endless Possibilities Publications to share some of her ideas in book form.
“As you write things down and search your own psyche and soul, you realize how much wisdom you have accumulated,” she said.
“I didn’t want to write this book. It’s painful as hell. But as I emerged from my own darkness, it was a calling.
She hopes the book can help others get through even the worst griefs.
“I believe it is in sharing our stories that we can truly find peace and healing, leading to the joy that is our birthright,” she said. “The hope of transformation and acceptance of tragedy is the main focus of this short story. Grief will undoubtedly touch every life. This story will be helpful to others who have suffered a difficult loss in their families. “
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