When my beloved husband died unexpectedly of Multiple Sclerosis and West Nile Virus, I didn't know how I would survive. A friend suggested that I start writing about my loss and once I did, I couldn't stop.
Even with all of those essays, I still had more to say, all of which can be found in my first book, Widowish, A Memoir. The "ish" came about because early on I realized that I did not fit the idea of widowhood. I often felt like I was failing at grief because I didn't look like a widow (too young), or act like a widow (I found love again) but I felt like a widow. I still do and I'm not sure that will ever go away.
I have been the keynote speaker for various organizations including Soaring Spirits International and Forest Lawn Memorial Parks. I've also lead workshops for Camp Widow, Faith & Grief ministries, as well as my own workshops for healing and connection.
My conversations about loss have taken place at seminars lead by renowned grief expert David Kessler, The Ed Asner Family Center for Mental Wellness, as well as with grief expert and author, Claire Bidwell Smith.
When my husband was alive and well, I was an award-winning screenwriter who wrote for such acclaimed TV series as Bill Nye the Science Guy, Party of Five, Beverly Hills 90210, and Lizzie McGuire. I also wrote several TV movies for networks such as NBC and Disney Channel, back when TV movies were an actual thing!
Somewhere in the middle of all of this, I was a parenting expert / "mompreneur" with several branded columns on major industry websites including WebMD and DisneyFamily. I appeared in front of the camera on such shows as Rachel Ray, Access Hollywood, KTLA’s Morning Show and many other "info-tainment" programs.
Other than writing, my greatest joy is being a mom to our daughter who is a well-adjusted, intelligent, and beautiful young woman. Joel would be so proud!
Melissa speaks and lectures widely on the subject of grief, parenting, and life after loss. If you're interested in having her at your event, please reach out using the contact link below.