Successful Book Launch of “Fallen Cradle”

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book launch fallen cradle“[tag]Fallen Cradle[/tag]” is a book of 22 stories by parents who have a lost a child. It was formally launched today at Powerbooks Greenbelt Makati. What can I say? The Book launch was a huge success. The initial 150 books set for the launch ran out. Anvil Publishing rushed to get more stock from the warehouse. My story on Luijoe, My Angel is on page 29. A lot of people say he’s such a handsome boy. I know. We chose that picture because he exudes so much charm.

The first few sentences of my story goes this way:

“β€œIf I die, Mama, will I be alive again?” Luijoe asked. My six-year-old was lying on the bed, flipping through the prayer books piled on his tummy.

It was Holy Week, a month before that fateful day of May 27, 2000, the day he drowned in a beach resort in Cebu.

I turned my body to face his and stroked his cheek. How could I explain the mysteries of death to a little boy? “β€œWhen we die, Lui, we will live forever, through eternal life in heaven,” I said the lines I’d memorized from the teachings of our Catholic Church.

Of course you have to buy the book to read the rest of the story.

This book paved the way to the positive resolution of my [tag]grief[/tag] journey. During the second blueprint in November 2005, Agnes Prieto invited me to be part of the book. I have never written my loss much less how Luijoe died. Writing Luijoe’s story turned out to be very difficult, often bringing tears as I recalled the painful events. These events were buried deep in my heart and I had to reach out to my innermost feelings. My sister, Myrna L. de Vera helped me a lot with the writing style (Thanks dear sister) and the editing work. Writing Luijoe’s story culimnated into the renewal phase of my grief journey. I submitted the final edit of my story on November 27, 2005. On the same day and inspired by my transformation, I wrote The Compassionate Friends International Council if I could start a Philippines Chapter. That was how The Compassionate Friends Philippines started. Reaching out to other bereaved parents is a living tribute to my son . Luijoe is never entirely gone.

fallen cradlefallen cradle butch
I’ve only attended two book launch events in my lifetime so I can’t really compare if today’s event was a tremendous success. I just said it was a hit because they ran out of copies. Agnes Prieto prepared a touching rose and cradle ceremony with a powerpoint presentation of each child represented in the book. A short anecdote taken from each story and our child’s photo flashed on the screen. The parents picked a single white rose from the table and placed it on the vase by the baby’s cradle. The toys surrounding the cradle belongs to Luijoe. Yes, all these years I’ve kept them in a sealed box. Butch , my dear hubby was a substitute for the absentee parent contributors.

signingbutch and meGreat to see The Compassionate Friends like Dr. Emma Llanto with her daughters, Aleli Villanueva, Tonette Dugan (whose daughter Sofia ‘s first death anniversary was today), Jonathan Salazar, Leirs Pagaspas, Arlene Hernando and of course Cathy Babao-Guballa and Alma Miclat. The INA foundation with Gina De Venecia and the mothers also got together. Meeting my long lost classmate Bibi Yu from Ateneo MBA was a surprise. I didn’t realize that it was her son who fell from Burgundy Condominium early last year. I didn’t recognize the married name so it was such a shock. Also at the event was Butch Dalisay, Paolo Manalo, Dr. Honey Carandang, Ricky de Ungria. Fortunately, Karina Bolanos, ANVIL publisher, approved The Compassionate Friends as one of the dealers of the book. It will be a fund raising project as well.

So yes, now I have a glimpse on how it feels to be a writer even if I’m only 1/22 contributor to the book.

group.jpg
Contributors to “Fallen Cradle” published by Anvil Books (Gilda Cordero-Fernando, Mrs. Abat, Alma Miclat, Gina de Venecia, Dr. Honey Carandang, Cathy Babao Guballa, Noemi Dado (in Teal blue) , Agnes Prieto, Mr. Prieto, Ricky de Ungria, Gen. Fortunato Abat, Mario Miclat, Gemino Abad and many more parents)
The Authors- View larger Image

Related Entries:
Cathy Babao-Guballa blog
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  • Ramon

    I was there at the book launch. So many people. The ceremony was touching. I was there to buy the book for my mother because she lost 2 children. Thank you for the meaningful message you wrote. Congratulations.

  • Ramon: I remember you. I hope your mother grieves well. Thank you for taking the time to buy her the book.

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  • Naku, even if I read only a portion of your story and even if I’m not a mom yet I was touched and somehow I can imagine your grief. I know that the pain you felt and still feeling is not something that I can comprehend since I have not experienced the loss of a loved one. I wish you and your family well. Better to focus on good memories than dwell on the grief. I’m sure that your son is in a “happier and more peaceful place” now.

  • Jane: I know you mean well in your last 2 sentences but that statement is not helpful for newly bereaved parents. Grief is inevtitable. Misery is optional. There is a difference between grief and misery. We grieve because we loved. Triggers can set off grief especially on anniversaries, Christmas or any memory.

  • Hopefully, i’d get to buy myself a copy of this book… glad the launch was succesful… am sure you’ll be able to reach out to otehr grieving parents out there… πŸ™‚

    happy weekend sis…

  • delish: Thanks. I’m sure it’s in National Bookstore or Powerbooks

  • my mom was there with the other moms of INA foundation too, coz i remember calling her as i was waiting at the airport and she said she was at powerbooks πŸ™‚ xavier, the son of mrs yu, was a classmate of my brother back in southridge.. i feel bad for their friend because they’ve had to deal with a number of deaths, and so close together..

    congratulations on the successful book launch πŸ™‚

  • hi noemi! i’m one of tonette’s closest friends here in sorsogon. she sent me a sms message about the successful launch. congratulations! i hope to have a copy of the book soon.

    actually, may 3 is sofia’s 1st birthday. her death anniversary is on september 27. sofia is my inaanak. =)

    by the way, my coordinator in the parish commission where i work, tita purry dado-lanuza, told me that your hubby is her nephew. butch’s dad is her cousin. linus dado-detera was my classmate in kindergarten and we were neighbors before when they were still here in sorsogon. small world, huh!

    i regularly visit The Compassionate Friends’ website. i always shed a tear when i hear the song Precious Child. i was so touched with your writings in luijoe’s website. keep writing!

    thanks so much for being a big help to Tonette. she invited me to join one of your monthly meetings. i’ll be in manila in june. hope i could drop by & join your group. GOD bless!

  • Cris: I might have met your mom but I just didn’t have time to talk to all of them. I was with the group of Bibi Yu (she’s a member of INA) and got introduced to a few of the mothers.

    Bing: Nice of you to drop by. Oh my mistake on Sofia’s anniversary date . I thought it was her angel date. Now what a small world. Yes join us in one of our meetings. They are held every 3rd saturday of the month.

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  • Sorry πŸ™

  • I’m sorry to all parents who have lost a child. I, myself lost my baby boy in 2003. He only lived for 6 days and words are not enough to describe the pain and the feeling of loss I had at that time – and until now, although it’s not as bad. Congratulations to the success of your book, Fallen Cradle. If I have the time, I will get a copy (if it’s still available)…

  • grace

    Hi. Can’t find a copy of that book. I’m dying to have one. =)

  • Emmaruth A. Chinel

    I too lost my daughter Camille who is 10 years old by a tragic car accident and up to now i cannot cope up about this accident and cannot accept, please help me to recover. I’m now here in Bangladesh working, i need some advice too.