DEBUT BOOK BY ACTRESS REAGAN J. PASTERNAK TACKLES PET LOSS AND REWRITES THE RULES FOR GRIEVING ANIMALS
Life is an irony. On one hand it gives me immense happiness to interview Actress Reagan J. Pasternak and on the other hand, the subject of her book is grief. “Griffin’s Heart” is a debut book by the actress Reagan J. Pasternak. She talks about love, loss and the life in between.
Reagan J. Pasternak is a Canadian-born actress (HBO’s “Sharp Objects”, “Being Erica”), singer, and writer. She currently lives in Los Angeles with her husband, son, and five rescue animals. She recently launched her first book, entitled Griffin’s Heart, Mourning Your Pet With No Apologies. The book is a part memoir and part interactive guide. It recounts the author’s personal experiences of mourning a pet while leading the reader delicately through healing exercises and providing space for journaling, sharing memories and photos, and more.
For more information, visit GriffinsHeart.com.
“I started writing Griffin’s Heart after the death of my soulmate animal, Griffin, as a way to help heal my wound and find meaning in my grief. Through this process I began to understand that the crushing weight of my loss was not unique to me and that for millions of people whose pets are their family, there was a need for a compassionate and insightful resource,” said Pasternak. “The book is everything I wish I’d had after my Griffin died and it’s my hope that readers will find comfort, insight, companionship, and hope in the pages.”
Here I go in conversation with Actress Reagan J. Pasternak for her debut book “Griffin’s Heart”.
1. Your book makes an encouraging read. Is it possible to overcome grief?
I think the goal isn’t to overcome grief. It’s to work with the grief and learn from it. Losing someone we love — whether it be an animal or a human — is such a personal experience. I’m not sure we ever completely get over it, but I do know that we can get through it.
2. What is it that you learnt from Griffin that made a lasting impact on you?
Griffin was pure love. He always brought me comfort and happiness. There was nothing complicating our bond and I think experiencing that type of love is such a gift. He also taught me that, as painful as it was to say goodbye to him, facing the hard parts and working through them actually ended up bringing me peace.
3. Pets are a source of joy, companionship and uncompromising love. Are these traits no longer available in human beings?
Well… I’m sure there are some people who can inhibit those attributes better than others. But human relationships are complicated! Animals seem to have the ability to live in the moment. They are pure of heart which is hard for humans, especially dealing with the stressors of life, ie work, money etc.
4. How to forgive your own self for not doing enough for the pets when they are alive & kicking?
I think the idea is just to make peace with yourself. The guilt can be so consuming. It really was for me. Hopefully my book will walk the readers through some ideas on how to accept the things we can no longer change and focus on so much you did that was right.
5. How to forgive yourself for taking your frustrations out on your pet?
Similar to how I answered the above question. Make sure we learn from our mistakes and learn to focus on the better memories.
6. Three reasons to pick Griffin’s Heart?
Griffin’s Heart is more than a grief book. It’s an interactive guide that will help you commemorate your pet in a beautiful keepsake that will hold memories and photos for years to come. Is that three? Haha!
7. Is buying another pet a way to forget the earlier one?
Adopting a new pet after losing one is such a personal choice. You have to feel ready. I, personally, don’t want to ever forget an animal or person who has passed away. I want to celebrate them and always carry them with me. A new animal will be completely different, because every life is individual. If you feel ready then I say bring it on. And always consider adopting a rescued animal in need!
8. Are men as emotional as women when it comes to grief?
I don’t think sexes can be generalized that way at all. There are many men who are completely devastated by the loss of a pet. It depends on the individual.
9. When is the book releasing in India?
10. What will be your advice to the readers of Let’s Expresso for overcoming guilt and living a life of abundance? What does abundance mean to you?
To me it is about love and learning. Life has painful moments that we can choose to run from or face. Clearing out the energy in us that is full of shame (or guilt) helps us move forward. That, to me, allows for abundance.
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Thank you Reagan J. Pasternak for speaking to Let’s Expresso. It’s always great to gather knowledge and support and sometimes it comes in the form of a book from a land far far way. I extend my gratitude for sending the soft copy of the book.
In case you’re looking for a programme to restore faith in love and life, enrol for my Communication coaching programme to speak and think with clarity, confidence and peace of mind.