Did you know that November 20th is Children’s Grief Awareness Day? I think all homes, schools, and doctors offices should have this book and open the lines of communication with children about grief. We should be equipping children to process pain and loss before it comes, giving them a tool to handle loss.
This book is sure to be a classic, upcoming book that will help kids (and adults) process grief, loss and letting go. Our family recently lost a beloved pet cat and this book came at the perfect time! Set in the 1930’s, the book finds 6-year-old Joey at the carnival where he befriends a magical yellow balloon. Joey and his beloved balloon do everything together, until the balloon accidentally slips off Joey’s wrist and floats away. When the balloon leaves, the illustrations turn to black-and-white, symbolizing how different everything feels when the shock of loss and the pain of grief comes. As Joey goes through the seasons, the author walks young readers through the stages of grief and color gradually returns to the story. This book really paved the way for my husband and I to have a healthy conversation with our daughters about how they are likely feeling.
ABOUT THE BOOK
When children experience loss, our instinct is to protect them from pain, so we don’t discuss it or prepare them. But pain and confusion aren’t going away—they’re part of life. In fact, one of the best ways we can help kids through grief and change is to encourage them to express their emotions.
Tiffany Papageorge’s award-winning book My Yellow Balloon™ is a poignant tale of love, loss and letting go, and will serve as a powerful tool for parents, teachers, librarians, and healing professionals.
My Yellow Balloon™ is centered on a boy named Joey and his best friend: a bright yellow balloon. Joey and his balloon do everything together, until the balloon accidentally slips of Joey’s wrist and flies far, far away.
“When our children are encouraged to experience loss and understand change in a real way, there is a hidden gift in the process,” Papageorge says. “The story is about healing and the transformation within us all that takes place when we bravely, courageously live through our experience of loss.” Illustrations by Erwin Madrid, a former DreamWorks Animation artist who worked on the Shrek franchise, perfectly capture these timeless themes, making them accessible to even the youngest reader.
“Amazing presentation and beautiful book!”—Annual Symposium, National Alliance for Grieving Children
“I never thought how powerful storytelling could be, especially in grief support!” —Annual Symposium, National Alliance for Grieving Children
“I absolutely love the book and plan to get a few more copies myself. It brings tears to my eyes each time I read it. Meeting you was a blessing to me and I will never forget your kindness. I could feel that you really cared. Not many people can do this. You are a remarkable woman!” –Compassionate Friends conference in Chicago
“The staff at Calm Waters Center for Children and Families have fallen in love with the book My Yellow Balloon. We believe that this book will be a great tool for children in our School-Based Program that are learning to cope with significant losses such as death, divorce, foster care, deployment, incarceration, and deportation. It is the perfect new addition for our grief and loss curriculum.” —Calm Waters Center for Children and Families
Disclaimer: I was given a copy of this book from PR By The Book in exchange for this press release which also includes my honest opinions.