Heart Berries is a sledgehammer, according to the New York Times review.

And I couldn’t agree more.

Here is a little more from, Parul Sehgal of the Times.

‘Heart Berries’ Shatters a Pattern of Silence

“Heart Berries” has a mixture of vulnerability and rage, sexual yearning and artistic ambition, swagger and self-mockery ….  (Mailhot) is unsparing to everyone, especially herself.

This book moved me and helped me to understand the ways in which pain and trauma can affect a person. As you may recall, I discussed these many ways in my last post, entitled I am still confused.  Terese Marie Mailhot offers a courageous look at how powerful a person’s feelings of unworthiness can be.

There are many paths to these kinds of overpowering emotions.

In Heart Berries, we learn about the traumatic life of its authour. Mailhot has been damaged by her upbringing, abusive relationships and the ravages of intergenerational trauma. She grew up on Seabird Island Indian Reservation in British Columbia. Members of her family had passed through Canada’s brutal residential school system, which separated indigenous children from their families and cultures, and, in some cases, subjected them to physical and sexual abuse.

Mailhot’s upbringing offered little preparation for her to cope with abusive relationships in her adult life. Each time she was betrayed by her boyfriends, she would somehow feel that she was at fault – that she was unworthy of love, respect and fair treatment.

She rarely felt anger. Mostly she felt that she was not enough – not enough for her boyfriend, not enough for a decent life. Mailhot shows with her powerful words and meanings just how pervasive and hurtful such thoughts and feelings can be.

People can also feel that they are not enough when they are disabled by injuries from car and work accidents. Long-term pain can wear you down and make you feel like you have little to offer the world. When your injuries limit your ability to help your family, day after day with no end in sight, you can feel worthless to yourself and to the people that need you the most. In my last post, I described a person who felt so hurt and so low that she wanted to shoot herself. She felt like hurting herself, instead of the doctor that betrayed her.

I learned a lot from Terese Marie Mailhot’s writing. She helps us to walk a little in her shoes. Her work shows us a world of hurt that can be hard to understand and very hard to forget. It struck a deep chord in me that continues to vibrate.

*   *    *

Thank you for reading. Thank you to Amazon (image above) and Rachel Walker (image below, from Unsplash) for your creative work. Please feel free to steal, share and join our growing list of subscribers.

AND, please spread the word using the hashtag #RealPhysicalPain with all your social media.