Mindful Grieving
For Dancing For Circles
Dancing in My Mother’s Slippers

Some of life’s most intimate and enlightening moments occur when we are taking care of an ailing parent or when we are living in the grief and new insights after they have made their transition. Fayegail Mandell Bisaccia’s profound book has a wealth of wisdom about this very important journey and I recommend you let yourself dance with it. Your spiritual life and your family life will be so much deeper as a result.
~ Leonard Felder, PhD,
author of The Ten Challenges

An intimate, inspiring, useful and moving account of one woman’s journey, through grieving, to the acceptance of her mother’s death. But it is more than that. It provides a window into the way a deep belief in an inner power and strength can carry us through any painful time. Ms. Bisaccia uses the beauty and wisdom of her Jewish faith as one pane of that window. It is an interesting, deeply introspective entrée into a modern perspective of Judaism. However, one does not need to be Jewish to recognize and identify with the universal wisdom expressed in her journey.
~ Mary Margaret Moore,
author of I Come as a Brother

Fayegail Bisaccia has given us a loving gift in her brave, intimate and transparent journal of her journey into love and learning, grieving and healing as she reckons with and struggles with her parents’ mortality. The collective wisdom of this family, their fears, humor, and candor, provides a richness that can inform and inspire anyone who will some day be present for and helping a loved one who is dying . . . that is, all of us.
~ Rabbi Marc Sirinsky

Dancing in My Mother’s Slippers is a valuable tool for hospice and grief work . . . a great read for book groups . . . a book to bring people together. Reading this book with my ninety-year-old mother made it a lot easier for us to face this passage together. It opened the door to a whole series of rich and intimate talks between us. I’m grateful to have found this book for my own journey and for my work with clients.
~ Georgia Moriarty King, mental health therapist

It is beautiful, profound, honest, well-written and riveting. Grief weaves its way into her daily life in unexpected ways. Resolution, or at least a deeper level of peace for her, comes only after time passes. We see her humanity (she is like us) and then we witness her extraordinarily brave spiritual quest. It gives us courage to look deeper at our own experiences, to hang in there on our own spiritual journey. That is one reason, I think, why she chose to write this book. It succeeds beautifully.
~ Anne Batzer

Dancing in My Mother’s Slippers is a wonderful day-to-day unfolding of personal grief and family intimacy which leads to a transcendent view—this is where the value lies.
~ Olive Streit, counselor

What made the book worthy is that it is about the living, not the grieving. It isn’t regretful. It is about a life that is full of love and honor for parents. It’s a model for relationship.
~ Judith Visser, Jewish educator

It talks to the heart, not to the head. It’s a word-of-mouth kind of book. I would definitely recommend it to my bereaved clients.
~ Sister Dorothy Pulkka, OSB, grief counselor

I found out I am grieving in a much deeper and more profound way than I had understood or acknowledged before I read Slippers. During this year I never thought to seek out other literature on grieving because I thought I had moved on. I went back to everything in my life right away. I thought I didn’t need to grieve, at least not much.
~ Kait Fairchild

People who have been through it will find comfort in her honest and compassionate treatment of medical issues.
~ Ellen Marks

Dancing in My Mothers Slippers is sensitively and artistically written. Her voice is authentic, self-revealing and forthright. The structure is like a symphony—loving relationships at the crescendo, great beauty, a sense of peace and maturity.
~ Ann Macrory


If you are looking for something that will make your heart sing with gratitude or that will bring peace and hope to a grieving heart, then read or grace someone with the gift of Circles. Comfort and healing doesn’t come any better than this.
    ~ Mary Margaret Moore,
author of I Come As a Brother: Bartholomew Revisited

To be so completely understood in a personal way in the poetry of another is an awesome gift. These poems are a gift to those of us who find ourselves brushing up against the mystery of death through the loss of a loved one. I keep them close by to help me remember I am not alone.
     ~ Carolyn Ruth

Fayegail Bisaccia’s book Circles will have an important place among my resources for healing.
    ~ Rabbi Marc Sirinsky

The forty names of god in Circles move me deeply. Breath of Life, Center of the Center, Sacred Source, Life Writer, Mystery, and so many more, return me to prayer revitalized with love and gratitude.
    ~ Jan Boggia, writer

I kept wanting to spend more time with them. . . to really live inside them for a while. . . . I love the sense of motion through the dying/grieving process, the way each prayer can stand on its own or together form a path, like beautiful stepping stones. They felt rich and deep and honest. The world needs what Fayegail is offering.
    ~ Auky van Beek, physician assistant

These prayers are very beautiful! They are just the kind of thing we keep our eyes out for to read aloud at WinterSpring events.
    ~ Lucinda Weatherby, Program Coordinator,
    WinterSpring Center,
Transforming Grief and Loss

Your words were precious “sounds” to my ear (to my soul...). I think a lot about death and you offer a very sensitive perspective through the poetry of your little book. (I do not fear it....death.)  I think I will go read it again. . . .
    ~ Joe Murphy, retired educator

I love the simple, inviting size and type set and language that draws you in and opens you up.... Beautiful offerings!
    ~ Rabbi Shoshanah Devorah,
hospice chaplain and congregational rabbi

I was just going to glance at it (read one, and then read the rest when I had more time) and I was completely drawn in, and sat down and read the whole thing, not in a hurry, but savoring each one completely, being transported completely to the place and time from which it is spoken. . . and so filled with grace. . . a light being shown on what are often our places of greatest fear and tightening. . . It is word by word exquisite and filled with tenderness.
    ~ Maria Mazhary, spiritual counselor

I find they are so moving, deep, true, that I can only read one, at most two, at a time.
    ~ Ellen Grush, counselor

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Sunset photo © 2006 Benjamin Fisher. Portraits by Shianna Walker, Georgia King, and Lance Bisaccia.
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