That’s right, today is launch day for The Weight We Carry. The book is inspired by my own experience with my parents and a health crisis, and it feels great to have it out in the world.
Marissa Raffaelo-Moretta is used to shouldering the burden. As the middle child, she’s played the mediator role for longer than she cares to admit. As a mother, she’s taken on the exhausting task of primary caregiver. And as a daughter and nurse practitioner, she’s spent her adult life being responsible for her parents’ physical and mental health.
When her stubborn and impulsive father, Frank, falls and refuses to stay at rehab, she and her brothers bring him home, and Marissa upends her life: she temporarily moves into her parents’ house, which takes precious time away from her two sons and jeopardizes her job. Soon, Marissa recognizes that life as they’ve all known it is about to change: while Frank’s ineffective legs are worrisome, her mother Angie’s memory issues might be a more urgent dilemma.
A heartbreaking and emotional story of the toll that health crises can have on an entire family, The Weight We Carry reminds us of the fine line between reliance and independence, tending and mothering, and love and obligation.