Other than knowing I had initially picked this book out to be my Far and Away CBR Bingo square I have no idea how this book got on my radar. I didn’t read this before Bingo ended, so this book has been hanging around my house since late October (thanks library extensions!) waiting for me to get to it. Its due back in two days, so now is the time.
Since this was my Far and Away square it was picked because its so different from my own life experience. Nora McInerny and I are the same age and are both Irish Catholic but that is where the similarities end. It’s Okay to Laugh (Crying is Cool Too) is McInerny’s memoir about the worst imaginable six weeks where she lost a pregnancy and both her father and husband died after battling cancers. Its an unimaginable amount of grief, compounded by the fact that Aaron Purmort’s brain tumor haunted their entire marriage.
The book is a series of essays brought together under the umbrella of McInerny’s beginning to process her losses. She tells the story of her childhood, of deciding to marry and have a family with Aaron knowing that they were doing it against a clock, and what the first few months after November 2014 looked and felt like. I’ve never been married, I don’t have children nor have I ever been pregnant, but I have lost loved ones and battled grief and there were passages in this book that resonated as true deep in me, ones that brought me to tears, and also ones that made me laugh – the contents live up to the title.