'For This Too, Is Love' a book of Poems, Reflections and Affirmations, compiles to tell the story about a woman's journey through a period in her life overwhelmed by grief and the injustices, misogyny, and racism in the world. Though her grief is personal, she finds that injustice, misogyny and racism are also themes in her private life mirrored by the external world.
The book was inspired by the author's decision to go on retreats throughout 2016. On one retreat she decided to do a month of intention setting where her focus was on affirming the things she would like to see show up for her health, family and friends, career and intimate partner relationship. On another retreat the author decided to journal her meditations for one month. Through these times of self-exploration and self-care, For This Too, Is Love came to life. During the process, the writer became aware she had always abstractly put poems together and was always reflecting. Her retreats and reflective state inspired her to make her thoughts concrete-- something that could be read, touched and felt.
The book's main theme is about self-care. Choosing life, whatever that may mean on any given day. However, there are several undertones in the book:
Grief: the book opens with the poem For This Too, Is Love which is also the title of the book. This poem shares about loss; the writer expresses how she feels while being able to connect with the universal pain felt when something or someone no longer exists in our personal world. Whether the grief surrounds the loss of a child or parent, the loss of a romantic relationship, the loss of income or the loss of health, the feelings tend to be similar. Yet, life continues, so we must move. Ironically, the book also ends with grief as well-- fear of losing the present. The fear of change by reflecting on the one constant love in her life and before her life, which is the fear of losing her mom in Muva.
Fighting: Rose Quartz and Raise Your Vibration as well as other content in the book shares about the struggle to remain hopeful; a constant fight to keep the head and heart up. To be willing to start over; to love again. Several times in the book the author breaks to breathe, to feel, to listen and to see-- really to remind herself of her participation in the world internally and externally.
Relationships: being patient with others, letting them Be. Being tolerant of the process of others and letting go of the need to put people in boxes. Patience was a reflection for the author to be able to share about the need to make someone right or wrong; being able to leave people to their mistakes. Writing Before You Tell Me You Love Me and A Respectable Woman, the author was able to share her struggles with her experience of misogyny and reflect upon her own internalized misogyny-- what it means to be good, respectable and wholesome; what we love about people and why we love them; coming to accept and love the inherent goodness of the self and others. On the flip side, the author shares about relationships in the poem A Lesson in Giving, sharing how we lose ourselves in relationships-- giving away our goodness; allowing others to give us their crap while we empty our gems recurrently to people who remain in ungrateful states. The always saying "yes" syndrome is challenged in A Lesson in Giving.
Affirmations: throughout the book, there are affirmations. These helped the writer to understand her being in the world. Her inherent goodness and even inherent "badness." The affirmations were a sense of knowing the value of what we bring to this life. The breath that we breathe in and out is our life recycling; our breathing affirms that we are alive. Life is challenging and anything at any moment can potentially change our mood. We are fragile. We must affirm our place in living even in low times. "I Love and accept my total being unconditionally" was an affirmation of self-acceptance for the author where she embraced her fragility and power; allowing both to exist as a part of her.
It is the author's hope that this book can help the reader to come in to the healing they may be seeking, enhance the reader's evolution or affirm the value in their existence.
Kerry Winchell is the author of For This Too, Is Love. She works as a Licensed Professional Counselor and is a Certified Natural Health and Holistic Practitioner. She perceives the world through existential eyes, believing that each person's purpose is to live a meaningful life. That this meaning is the form in which each person chooses to create. For This Too, Is Love is available on websites Amazon and Barnes and Noble or inquire at your local bookstore.