Think You’ll Be Happy: Moving Through Grief with Grit, Grace, and Gratitude (Review)

Nicole Avant released her memoir, “Think You’ll Be Happy: Moving Through Grief With Grit, Grace, and Gratitude,” in October, as exclusively revealed by Variety. In the book, the philanthropist, filmmaker, and diplomat writes candidly about coming to terms with the tragic death of her mother, Jacqueline, who was fatally shot during a robbery at her Beverly Hills home in 2021.

Navigating the River of Tears: A Deep Dive into “Think You’ll Be Happy”

Nicole Avant’s Think You’ll Be Happy: Moving Through Grief with Grit, Grace, and Gratitude isn’t just a memoir; it’s a raw and intimate dance with loss, a lifeline thrown to those grappling with the crushing weight of grief. Published in the wake of her mother’s tragic passing in 2021, Avant delves into the emotional labyrinth of mourning with an unflinching honesty that is both cathartic and deeply relatable.

From Princess’s Playground to Abyss: The book opens with a poignant portrait of Avant’s idyllic childhood, bathed in the warmth of her parents’ love and the vibrant energy of the artistic luminaries who frequented their Los Angeles home. This golden backdrop makes the sudden plunge into the abyss of her mother’s death all the more jarring. Avant doesn’t shy away from the brutal rawness of her pain, recounting the shock, disbelief, and paralyzing emptiness that consumed her.

Grit: The Fuel for the Soul’s Ascent: But what sets “Think You’ll Be Happy” apart is its refusal to wallow in despair. Avant, remembering her mother’s mantra of “find the joy,” embarks on a journey of healing that is as inspiring as it is illuminating. She grapples with anger, guilt, and the seemingly impossible task of moving forward, but through it all, her unwavering “grit” shines through. She finds solace in memories, in the unwavering support of her family and friends, and in the simple act of putting one foot in front of the other.

Grace: The Dance of Acceptance: Avant’s path to healing is paved with both strength and surrender. She writes about embracing vulnerability, the unexpected grace found in tears shared with strangers, and the quiet comfort of rituals large and small. There’s a sense of vulnerability in her prose, a willingness to lay bare the messy tapestry of grief without pretense. This genuine vulnerability becomes a bridge, inviting readers to share their own journeys of loss and find solace in shared humanity.

Gratitude: The Seed of Transformation: Throughout the book, Avant weaves in themes of gratitude, reminding us that even in the darkest moments, there is always something to be thankful for. It’s a subtle but powerful message, urging us to shift our focus from what we’ve lost to the blessings that remain. Whether it’s the beauty of a sunrise, the warmth of a hug, or the simple act of drawing breath, Avant celebrates the small glimmers of light that illuminate the path back to joy.

Beyond Self: A Beacon for Collective Healing: “Think You’ll Be Happy” is more than just a personal story; it’s a testament to the universal human experience of grief. By sharing her raw emotions and hard-won insights, Avant provides a roadmap for anyone navigating the tumultuous waters of loss. Her book serves as a reminder that grief is not a destination, but a journey, and that even in the deepest sorrow, there is the potential for healing, transformation, and even joy.

This is not a book that offers platitudes or quick fixes. It’s a messy, honest exploration of grief in all its complexity. However, it’s also a testament to the resilience of the human spirit, a beacon of hope in the face of loss. For those drowning in the sea of their own tears, “Think You’ll Be Happy” reminds us that it’s possible to reach the shore, battered but unbroken, and find the strength to build anew.

Further Exploration:

For those seeking additional resources on grief and loss, here are some helpful organizations:

I hope this deep dive into “Think You’ll Be Happy” piques your interest and encourages you to explore the book’s depths for yourself. It’s a journey worth taking, and one that might just illuminate the path towards your own healing and rediscovery of joy.