How One Grieving Mother Found Joy in a Corny, Rom-Com Book

Dear Grieving Momma, 

I recently came across a wonderfully written Romantic Comedy based on a true story of loss, finding oneself, redemption, and overall happiness. Before you say how silly and unrealistic ‘rom-coms’ are, give me a chance to tell you about a pretty funny, down-to-earth, and gut-wrenching story that left me in tears. If you are ready for that adventure, read along and enjoy. 

Love,
A Fellow Grieving Momma –
Rebeca Velazquez, mother of Lynn Sofia

Grieving mom

Romance novels are misunderstood, says Jimenez, whose books tackle infertility, death and heartache—injected with laughs along the way.

Warning: This book does address the loss of a loved one. This might sound strange, but I think that’s why I loved this book so much. I haven’t read a romantic comedy that addressed such real issues like grief, loss, etc. in the way this book did. 

I have shared my personal story of losing my own daughter and this book provided the perfect amount of laughter while teaching me some valuable life lessons while grieving.

Mid-Michigan Mom Book Reader Enthusiast Rating: 5/5.

a book brings me joy1 – Abby Jimenez never expected to publish this book as it was based on true events in her life.

In the “Author’s Note” at the end of “The Happy Ever Playlist,” Abby Jimenez talks about a childhood friend of hers whose husband passed away fairly early in the marriage. Similar to the main character Sloan Monroe, Abby’s friend had an amazing career and was so incredibly driven until her world was flipped upside down by the tragic death of her fiancé.

Abby, herself, could not even reach her friend for a period of time after her friend’s loss. While a lot of details are fiction of course, the story took her friend to heal and find happiness in her own life in order to bring this story to life. Had her friend not found joy in her life, this book would never end up in your hands.

2 – Jimenez wants to break the stereotype of romantic comedies.

In “The Friend Zone” {the first book of the series}, Jimenez addresses infertility and then tackles an unexpected tragic loss and grieving. Wow, let’s just say Jimenez does not shy away from real-life tragedies. 

In an interview with NBC, Jimenez said, “The fact that you can pick up a book and read your own struggle is pretty empowering and pretty amazing and that’s true for all romance,” Jimenez said. “From infertility to domestic abuse to sexism in the workplace, these are things that women deal with on a day-to-day basis and you can often find those things in romance novels.”

3 – I learned what ‘complicated grief’ was…keep in mind, from a romantic comedy.

Complicated grief, or persistent complex bereavement disorder, is common for someone to experience when they have unexpectedly lost someone and/or that loss is incredibly traumatic. Someone experiencing complicated grief may encounter anxiety, panic attacks, suicidal thoughts, PTSD, substance or alcohol abuse, and so much more. Jimenez would later learn this is what her friend experienced. She then focused the story of Sloan Monroe around that very raw and real disorder to educate and help others experiencing similar tragedies.

4 – Self-love after experiencing grief is so crucial for your growth and you do not need to feel guilty about that.

After losing my daughter, I felt incredibly guilty about taking a trip to Traverse City with my husband and best friends. I even recently took a trip down south for a wedding and felt guilty about that. The main character, Sloan Monroe, experiences the same thing, immediately feeling guilty when good things happen following a loss. 

For both of us, it was not until our best friends stepped in and reminded us that finding our own self-love is spiritually, emotionally, and physically beneficial for growing throughout your grieving. There will be some hiccups and some possible bad moments in that self-love journey, but my daughter would not want me to stay stuck. She would want us to rise again from the ashes like a majestic phoenix (shout out to my Harry Potter fans).  

grieving5 – Your lost love one will always be a part of your story and I love that so much for you.

There is no timeline for how and when we experience grieving. However, what you are doing right now is perfect for you. I personally struggle with the idea of moving forward with my life as Sloan Monroe did in the book. But you will have a personal guardian angel with you at all times. And that’s pretty amazing. 

If you have stayed with me up to this point, thank you. I would highly recommend grabbing you a copy of “The Happy Ever After Playlist” so you can cry, laugh, and love life a little more. 

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