Friday, January 08, 2016

Between the Lines: Writing Through Grief

by Zinta Aistars
for WMUK 102.1 FM
Southwest Michigan's NPR affiliate

Between the Lines is my weekly radio show about books and writers with a Michigan connection. It airs every Tuesday at 7:50 a.m., 11:55 a.m., and 4:20 p.m. (or listen anytime online), on WMUK 102.1 FM, Southwest Michigan's NPR affiliate. I am the host of Between the Lines.

This week's guests: Mira Ptacin

The pregnancy was unplanned. The boyfriend was new. Mira Ptacin wasn’t sure she was ready for any of this, but it was too late to back out now. After all, she was in love with Andrew; she was 28; and why not accept his proposal for marriage? Everything was going to be just fine. Even if she did just cancel her health insurance. But everything was not fine.

Ptacin’s memoir Poor Your Soul (Penguin Random House, 2016), recounts her experience of grief and loss at finding out from an ultrasound that her unborn baby had serious birth defects and could not survive outside the womb. Ptacin had three options: end the pregnancy, induce early delivery, or wait and inevitably miscarry.

While Ptacin struggled with losing her child, her parents tried to cope with the sudden loss of Ptacin’s brother, 14-year-old Julian, who was killed by a drunken driver. Tragedy seemed to hit Ptacin from all sides.
Mira Ptacin
Ptacin is a Battle Creek-native and a graduate of Western Michigan University who deals with social issues as she deals with personal issues. Her book describes what happens when a woman who's expecting and faces the complication of having no health insurance. She addresses the lack of empathy shown to a woman who has had to terminate a pregnancy or gone through a miscarriage by friends in her inner circle as well as society in general. She writes about the irony of growing up Catholic and having a father, a medical doctor and former seminarian, guide her through the end of her pregnancy.
As part of her concern for the social welfare of women, Ptacin teaches memoir-writing at the Maine Correctional Facility, near her home in Portland. She says sharing her story with the women imprisoned there has been especially meaningful.
“These women have often endured hardship all their lives. They end up in prison because of ...

No comments:

Post a Comment