'Wake-Up Call': BR mom writes book to help people grieve

Photo provided by staff.
Thursday, June 19, 2014 - 3:29pm

Just the idea of losing a child is heartbreaking. For a woman right here in Baton Rouge, it's her reality. But in the midst of her darkness, she found a way to help other people find the light. She's helping others one page at a time.

They call it mother's intuition.

"Something was wrong, and it came through me as a panic attack, not knowing what it actually was," said Cherie Rickard.

Cherie Rickard's son Bryant was 17 years old and full of life. He was athletic and wanted to play LSU Baseball one day, until an accident took his life and changed his family's lives forever.

"He over-corrected, and when he did, he flipped his truck," Rickard explained. "We were told that Bryant wasn't wearing his seatbelt, but he was ejected from his vehicle. When his truck flipped, the final flip, what we were told, landed on my son."

Rickard was heartbroken. So she took to her journal to sort out her feelings.

"In the beginning, it was just my feelings," Rickard said. "It goes pretty deep."

Rickard never thought her journal would turn into a book. But years later, she reconnected with an old friend who just happened to be a publisher.

"He reached out to me and said, 'Can I read your book and read what you have?' It was just a bunch of journal entries, and it was just a mess. It was by no means a book at the time, but I sent it to him, and he immediately loved it," Rickard said.

Rickard said "Wake-Up Call" was a way to tell her story and help others who are dealing with the loss of a loved one.

"It's amazing how those that have reached out to me in those tragedies that have actually read the book. They told me they are so thankful that they've met me or they're so thankful that they were introduced to this book," Rickard said.

Now Rickard goes around the country sharing her story, talking about her book, and helping others through the grieving process.

"I want to be that person. The person who reached out to that parent, that mother, that child that lost a sibling," Rickard said. "Just be that person that can say 'Hey, I know exactly how you feel.'"

Rickard's book isn't in stores right now, but it is available online. Rickard said she is working on her next book that will focus on how to heal.

If you want to learn more about Cherie and her book, you can go to the link below:

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