As a bereavement care specialist, Dr. Virginia Simpson has devoted her career to counseling individuals and families grappling with illness, death, and grieving. But when her own mother, Ruth, is diagnosed in 1999 with a life-threatening condition, Virginia is caught off guard by the storm of emotions she experiences when she is forced to inhabit the role of caregiver. In a quest to provide her mother with the best care possible, Virginia arranges for Ruth to move in with her―and for the next six years, she cares for her, juggling her mother’s doctor’s appointments, meals, medication schedules, transportation needs, and often cranky moods with her own busy schedule.
Her Book: The Space Between: A Memoir of Mother-Daughter Love at the End of Life
In The Space Between: A Memoir of Mother-Daughter Love at the End of Life, Simpson takes readers along for the journey as she struggles to bridge the invisible, often prickly space that sits between so many mothers and daughters, and to give voice to the challenges, emotions, and thoughts many caregivers experience but are too ashamed to admit. Touching and vividly human, The Space Between reminds us all that without accepting the inevitability of death and looking ahead to it with clarity, life cannot be fully lived.
Virginia A. Simpson, Ph.D., FT is a bereavement care specialist and Executive Counseling Director for hundreds of funeral homes throughout the United States and Canada. She is the Founder of The Mourning Star Center for grieving children and their families, which she ran from 1995 to 2005, and author of the memoir The Space Between (She Writes Press, April 2016) about her journey caring for her ailing mother. Virginia has appeared on numerous television and radio programs. She holds a Fellowship in Thanatology from the Association of Death Education & Counseling (ADEC) and has been honored for her work by the cities of Indian Wells, Palm Desert, Palm Springs, and Rancho Mirage. She lives in El Dorado Hills, California with her husband Bob and Golden Retriever Shelby.
For more information visit: virginiaasimpson.com