Inspiring Stories: Yvonne Broady
Inspiring Stories is a regular series featuring interviews and discussions with well known authors, motivational speakers and entrepreneurs from within the widows and widowers community. In today’s edition we speak to US based author, blogger and public speaker Yvonne Broady.
Tell us a little about yourself
My name is Yvonne Broady and I am a native New Yorker, born and raised. I am a writer and I blog about grief matters, life matters, and love matters. I’m also the author of ‘Brave in a New World: A Guide to Grieving the Loss of a Spouse’.
What lead you to write your book ‘Brave In A New World’?
I was inspired to write this book after I lost my husband in 2009 to pancreatic cancer. His loss left me devastated and full of uncertainty as I struggled with trying to make sense of having lost my husband to this dreadful disease, in an instant, just like that. Consequently, I was forced to put my life back together again.
How much did your book help you to overcome your grief?
Writing Brave in a New World helped me to see how far I had come in my own grief journey. From the acute pain of the early days after my loss, to the period when I began to realize that I was overcoming my grief and beginning to rebuild my life, which no longer resembled the old one, on my own. This happened over many years of dedicated hard work in which I focused on ways to get past my sorrow over the loss of my husband and begin to think about how I would recreate my new life.
What topics or themes are of particular interest to you?
I wanted to share my story so that those who grieve would understand that the pain of grief is normal, and, in order to get past the pain, one must go through it. Everyone grieves differently. No one should be influenced by other’s expectations, timelines, or other limitations people put on us as we navigate our grief journeys.
You’ve had a quite a varied career. Is there one particular interest that inspires you more than others?
My book is a template for those who are navigating the grief experience. My story is an affirmation of everyone’s grief journey and encourages and strengthens widows and widowers as they begin to rebuild their lives. It also lets them know that this too shall pass, as long as one grieves and doesn’t hold it in.
Can you share with us the ‘Five Things’ have helped you through bereavement?
The process of writing Brave in a New World: A Guide to Grieving the Loss of a Spouse helped to bring an end to my own grief. It was a slow process, as it took 2 ½ years for me to write the book. Eventually, I was able to put my grief behind me. I now have a new life full of a variety of activities and fulfilling friendships.
Exercising, weight training and walking were activities that helped me to purge some of the grief. They assisted me in the beginning to feel good about myself again.
One piece of music/song?
I have such eclectic taste in music it’s difficult to pinpoint one. I love Classical, Jazz, R&B, New Age and Urban Contemporary.
Two quotes that have helped me on this journey, and which I frequently refer to are:
“We grieve because we have loved.”
“Keep your eyes on the target no one else sees.”
The first quote is self-explanatory and the second quote is a reminder that as you rebuild your life after the loss of your spouse. There will be those who want to tell you what it is that they think you should be doing. I suggest that you decide what you want to do for yourself. Bear in mind that you have been given an opportunity to have a second chance at living life in a new way and only you can decide what that life will look like.
One piece of advice?
One bit of advice that I would share with those who have lost a spouse and that is to just grieve. Cry, cry, cry, weep, weep, weep. Do not hold in your pain and sorrow, as over time this will do more harm than good. In due time the pain will subside and you’ll be on the road to your own new beginning.
Yvonne Broady is author of the book, ‘Brave in a New World’.
To find out more about Yvonne Broady, visit her website.
This article is part of the ‘Inspiring Stories’ series.