Review of Grieving a Soulmate

I have had the privilege of reading two of Robert Orfali's books outlining how he dealt with the death of his soulmate, Jeri.  If you can read this one with dry eyes, you need to check your pulse.  A highly recommended resource for those experiencing grief...or who are about to experience grief.

Happy Friday!

Available at
Grieving a Soulmate: The Love Story Behind “Till Death Do Us Part”
Robert Orfali
Mill City Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1-936400-66-9
280 Pages (Includes front and back matter)

Frances Moore Lappé, author of 18 books including the three-million copy Diet for a Small Planet once shared, "Even the fear of death is nothing compared to the fear of not having lived authentically and fully." Nothing could be more prescient of the life lived and enjoyed by Robert and Jeri Orfali – particularly in the last ten years of Jeri Orfali’s life.

Robert Orfali, an accomplished author with expertise in information technology, has written a love story worthy of Shakespeare with his Grieving a Soul Mate. Cancer reached forth its menacing tentacles and prematurely took his beloved Jeri from him. For those who might be battling similar scenarios, this tome will prove a ready resource to help the lone survivor deal with grief.

Before outlining the highlights of the book, it must be understood that this book is not merely for couples who are facing an imminent death—rather, this book should be required reading for anyone who is planning to enter a union with the specification of―till death do us part.‖ This reality will invade all such unions and the tenets covered in this book would make excellent discussion material for those still in the planning stages
of matrimony.

The reader will be impressed with the depth of research Mr. Orfali employs in developing his subject matter. Initially, he provides a summary of Jeri’s battle with cancer to provide a context of care which informs the level of grief he experienced. Robert shares openly of the mourning process and details many contemporary ideas about mourning the inevitability and harrowing experience of death. [Additionally, there is a complete
Appendix that shares Robert’s email communication to amplify the grief he experienced.]

After setting the stage, Mr. Orfali masterfully transitions to the premise of the book: how to grieve a soul mate. He describes grief bursts—the mind’s nearly sadistic psychological attempt to force the lone survivor to deal with death. As he outlines what much of contemporary psychology has to say on the matter, the reader can be assured of the counsel Robert utilizes to guide the lone survivor to healing.

In five chapters, Robert amplifies upon specific grief cures:
 The Last Days
 Survivor’s Guilt
 She’s Gone Forever
 Self-Pity
 The Existential Issues

I like the way that Orfali does not leave the reader in the quagmire of despair. After outlining the methods he used to conquer these grief bursts, he guides the survivor on his journey to experiencing zero pain. The love story comes full circle when you see that Robert created a virtual memorial to his beautiful wife Jeri at This website illustrates the vibrancy of Jeri Orfali, an IT executive who found her identity as a surfer in Waikiki, Hawaii. Up to right before her death, Jeri Orfali fulfilled the idea of ―living authentically and fully.

If you are currently grieving, or will face grief in the near future, this book will help you. Robert Orfali is to be commended for writing a compelling love story which doubles as a textbook on how to mourn a lost loved one.


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