“I was petrified we would have a girl. Everything about having a girl was horrible to me—the princess parties, the fear for her safety, and the emotional roller coaster ride. But mostly I was afraid she would be like me: suicidal, unable to make brave choices, and trapped inside a body she didn’t love. I was terrified I would have to face that mirror in two places every day.”
Before I Let You Go: Stories for My Grown Son is a journey of Kirsten Wreggitt’s life through motherhood and marriage, and her self-discovery along the way. It is a collection of stories she wanted to share with her grown son about her life’s greatest lessons. These were stories she could not talk about with him because they were too uncomfortable or raw. As she says “In here, I can say the things that catch in my throat. I can say the things that make your eyes roll. In here, I can safely share what I have always wanted to tell you but the time was just never right.”
Among the many stories in this book, Kirsten shares stories of the difficulty of marriage, the struggle to love herself and her body, the triumph of facing her fears, the pain of loving a child, the regret of decisions, and the freedom of knowing yourself. She discusses these with a rare honesty and sometimes offers up surprising advice as a result.
Before I Let You Go is a woman’s reflection on the halfway point of her life and the journey to get there. She shares the joy of the journey and being in the moment: “I am not anticipating the next stop—I am here paying attention, and loving what I see.” She shares the struggle with finding her purpose: “And what if I still never really know why I am here? I still must eat. I still must drink. I still must sleep. And I must love. And love? Even if that is all there is, that changes everything.” And she shares her most difficult question of all: “I am face to face with my mortality, and though I have loved others and was loved by others, the only question that remains is “Did I love me?””
“Average lives can be extraordinary.” —Kirsten Wreggitt
Kirsten Wreggitt grew up in a small town in the middle of the Great Lakes region in Canada. Her big heart and curious mind have taken her on a few journeys through a couple of relocations, careers, and roles. Each opportunity has shaped her view of the world and sparked another journey into more curiosity and reflection. She currently lives, writes, and works in Calgary, Alberta.