The Gift of Great Sorrow, by Louise Braun Frank
“Louise Frank’s courageous voice offers a gripping testament to loss and trauma, and the healing power of grace, perspective and insight into the many gifts she discovered along the way. At its’ core, this is a love story that will melt your heart and give comfort and strength to anyone in the grips of caregiving, grief, and the ongoing challenges of caring for ourselves as we vigilantly care for those we love.”
Gail Hudson, Feminine Empowerment Coach and NY Times bestselling co-author with Dr. Jane Goodall
“After more than 40 years in my television news career, I reported on hundreds of stories of bravery, survival, and sheer determination by families facing some of life’s toughest challenges. Louise Frank’s account of her and her children’s journey is among the most inspiring and compelling stories I have ever known. Her words take the reader on a sometimes searing, often funny, and almost unbelievable trek through the birth and too-short lives of her two beloved children… Joshua and Leah. Yet somehow, because of the innate fortitude and grit of this truly amazing mother, we are left inspired at the end. This story needed to be told and by writing it, Louise has honored the memory and legacy of her children. They – and she – will never be forgotten.”
Julie Blacklow, Journalist and Author
How do you move forward when your life is unexpectedly shattered by devastating news?
You can sink into despair, or this temporary devastation can become a profound journey where the choices you make bring more meaning, purpose, and promise than you could ever have imagined. The Gift of Great Sorrow by Louise Braün Frank is the story of Louise’s 25-year journey with her children Joshua and Leah who were diagnosed at the age of six with a progressive terminal disease which eventually claimed their young lives. As she walked through the grief of their daily losses, instead of becoming discouraged and overwhelmed, she chose to embody her father’s advice, “Watch them live, don’t watch them die.”
In The Gift of Great Sorrow, we experience a story that moves beyond tragedy to triumph — not because the tragedy changes, but because of the transforming power of perspective, love, and courage.
Louise Braun Frank was born in Ottawa, Canada. Raised in a military family with five brothers and sisters, Louise lived in many areas of Canada, in France and finally settled in the Seattle area. Louise’s two children, Joshua and Leah were both diagnosed at a young age with Friedreich’s Ataxia, a rare, progressive and debilitating terminal disease. Over the course of their short lives, they lost their abilities to walk, see and manage their personal care. But with the help of a determined and committed mother, the children outlived the doctor’s predictions and survived into their twenties.
In addition to helping her children live their best lives, Louise has built a successful direct sales business with The Pampered Chef and continues with that work today. An advocate for volunteerism, Louise gives her time to the Alaska Washington Make A Wish Foundation and local food banks. Over the years she has been invited as a guest speaker to share her experiences in the hope that others who have suffered trauma and loss of all types, will find a path thru pain to purpose.
The Joy Thru Tears Foundation, a non-profit, was founded by Louise in December 2020 with the vision of facilitating workshops to help with healing. www.joythrutears.foundation
Louise has also walked the Camino de Santiago in Spain on three different occasions, each time searching for a way to grow spiritually and move forward in her life. She plans to return again.